VIDEO. Marseille: Massileo, or how to produce renewable energy from the sea

The building installed on the port of Marseille, where the sea water is pumped. — EDF Optimal Solutions

  • Optimal Solution, a subsidiary of Dalkia (EDF group) has inaugurated this Friday at the port of Marseille, Massileo a network of renewable energy powered by the thalassothermie.
  • Thanks to the sea water, a loop of warm water is fed which will produce water hot or cold depending on the needs.
  • In the long term, while the district of EuroMéditerranéé could be supplied with energy by the thalassothermie.

Optimal Solutions, a subsidiary of Dalkia group ( EDF), has inaugurated this Friday at the port of Marseille, Massileo, a network of
renewable energy to power the future district of EuroMéditérannée-II. This system thalassothermie is capable of producing 21 megawatts of hot or cold, with 75 % of renewable energy. Cost of the operation ? Ten million euros, financed by the european Union, the region, the environment Agency and the control of energy (ADEME) and the Caisse des dépôts.

But in fact, how does this technique that allows for the production of energy through the sea. 20 Minutes to explain to you.

The interior of the building on the harbour where the sea water is pumped. – EDF Optimal Solutions
Read also : deep geothermal energy will allow heating of the 20,000 homes in Strasbourg

How does it work ? Sea water is pumped to four meters deep in the interior of a building on the autonomous port of Marseille. In this building, the calories present in the water are recovered while the water is discharged back into the sea. Even with water at 10 degrees, the calories can be extracted. These make it possible to feed a loop of warm water that connects the hotel on the port to the heat pumps installed in basements of buildings.

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This network extends over 1.4 kilometres. The heat pumps are then used to cool or warm water depending on the uses.

What is the innovation ? Other thalassothermie exist on the shores of the mediterranean. The system Massileo innovates by allowing the transfer of calories between the different buildings. For example, the heat produced to air-condition the offices can be used to produce hot water for the dwellings.

Inauguration of the project Massiléo alongside @J_B_Levy #GPMM: renewable energy grid smart, a major part of the project #Allar

— Renaud Muselier (@RenaudMuselier) October 13, 2017
Also read : Where is France on the marine renewable energies?

Who is for this energy ? Massileo feeds the new district Smartseille an area of 2.7 hectares, in the planning area the euro-Mediterranean region-II. This area will consist of offices, hotels and housing. Eventually, they hope to provide power to the whole area of EuroMéditerannée, more than 500.000 m2. The connections are not yet made to provide as much energy, but everything is provided in the building power on the port. Only production units, with a heat pump, will have to be built as well as the power supply network.

The production room of water hot or cold, installed in the basement of the buildings of Euromed. – EDF Optimal Solutions

What is the energy gain ? Only the heat pumps work with electricity. To produce 4 kilowatt-hours, a single is produced by electricity, the rest is supplied by this network in water temperate. “This system can produce 75 % renewable energy and it avoids the production of 80 % of CO2,” says Charles-Antoine Raclet, project director at Optimal Solutions. In terms of the economy for individuals, the cost of this energy is substantially the same as that for traditional energy sources.

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#Massileo will feed into the housing and offices located in the new district #euro-Mediterranean region emitting 80% less C02 @lacaradec

— Euroméditerranée (@Euromed_MRS) October 13, 2017
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Is there a consequence on the environment ? The water discharged to the sea has not the same temperature as its input, but it is not altered. “Even at full power and in the worst situations (hot weather, unfavorable winds), the temperature in the pool of rejection would decrease by only 0.1 degree “, reassures Charles-Antoine Raclet.