# Comprehensive Review of Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) Technologies

^{*}

## Abstract

**:**

## 1. Introduction

## 2. CAES History and Basic Principles

- A motor or generator with clutches for alternate engagement with the compressor or turbine train.
- An air compressor with two or more stages, inter-coolers and after-coolers, to achieve compression efficiency and reduce compressed air moisture content.
- The turbine train that includes both high-pressure and low-pressure turbines.
- Controls for the combustion turbine, compressor, and auxiliaries, as well as for the regulation and control of the changeover from generation to storage mode.
- Auxiliary equipment for the facility’s operation, including fuel storage and handling, as well as mechanical and electrical systems for various heat exchangers.
- The underground component mainly consisting of a cavity for compressed air storage.

#### 2.1. Diabatic CAES Systems (D-CAS)

#### 2.2. Adiabatic/Advanced Adiabatic Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES)/(AA-CAES)

#### 2.3. Isothermal Compressed Air Energy Storage (I-CAES)

#### 2.4. Droplet-Based I-CAES

#### 2.5. Liquid Piston Air Compressor/Expander (LP-CAES)

^{3}, it increases by 18%.

#### 2.6. Ocean CAES (OCAES)

## 3. Performance and Operating Conditions of D-CAES, A-CAES and I-CAES

^{3}power density in compression; in expansion, power density increased three-fold at 99% efficiency and efficiency improved by 7% at 150 kW/m

^{3}power density [78].

## 4. CAES Variants and Integrating of CAES Systems with the Renewable Energy Storage Technologies

## 5. Conclusions

- CAES systems’ high energy capacity, high power rating, and long life span of around 40 years make it suitable for stationary and large-scale applications.
- CAES suffers from relatively low energy efficiency (between 40 and 70%), and there is much interest in its integration with different cycles to recover waste heat and to reducing exergy destruction.
- It is also necessary to integrate CAES with renewable energy sources in order to increase renewable penetration and system reliability.
- It is necessary to improve the performance of CAES technologies in order to extend their competitiveness, affordability, and efficiency for large-scale applications.
- To avoid under-sizing, over-sizing, decreased profitability, or decreased reliability, optimum capacity for a given pressure range of the air reservoir is required.
- Figure 12 below provides a comprehensive summary of the main advantages and disadvantages of the CAES classifications.

## Author Contributions

## Funding

## Data Availability Statement

## Conflicts of Interest

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**Figure 2.**Gas turbine and CAES schematic diagram: (

**a**) schematic diagram of gas turbine system; (

**b**) schematic diagram of storing energy in gas turbine system.

**Figure 5.**Heat and energy fluxes at the McIntosh CAES plant, adapted from [35].

**Figure 8.**Schematic diagram of a droplet-based isothermal CAES (I-CAES) system producing 1.0 kWh output power, adopted from [84].

**Figure 10.**OCAES system: (

**a**) diabatic OCAES, (

**b**) adiabatic OCAES, (

**c**) isothermal OCAES, (

**d**) isothermal OCAES system based on the liquid piston concept.

Specifications | Unit | Huntorf Plant | McIntosh Plant |
---|---|---|---|

Operation year | - | 1978 | 1991 |

Capacity | [MW] | 290 | 110 |

Charging period | [h] | 8 | 40 |

Discharging period | [h] | 2 | 26 |

Start-up time | [min] | 14 | 12 |

Charging time | [h] | 8 | 40 |

Discharging time | [h] | 2 | 26 |

Efficiency of plant | [%] | 42 | 53 |

Efficiency of compressor | [%] | 80 | 80 |

Minimum/Maximum energy | [MWh] | Min. 0, Max. 480 | Min. 200, Max. 2000 |

Number of caverns | - | 2 | 1 |

Pressure range of cavern | [bar] | 46–72 | 46–75 |

Cavern volume | [m^{3}] | 310,000 | 538,000 |

Air mass flow of compression | [kg/s] | 107 | 93 |

Air mass flow expansion | [kg/s] | 455 | 154 |

Temperature of exhaust gas | [°C] | 480 | 370 ^{1} |

^{1}Before recuperator.

Reference | System Evaluated | Outcome |
---|---|---|

[49] | A-CAES: Effectiveness and pressure loss of heat exchangers in A-CAES systems | Improved heat exchanger efficiency during charging or discharging significantly improved system efficiency |

[50] | CAES: Configurations | High-temperature thermal storage (>600 °C) with temperature-resistant compressor materials improved efficiency |

[51] | A-CAES: Multi-stage compressors and expanders and TES at 95–200 °C | Low round-trip efficiency (52–60%), fast start-up, and a wide range of partial load capability |

[52] | A-CES: Low-temperature TES | Cycle efficiency (68%) and heat energy cycle efficiency (60%), |

[25,50,51,52,53,54,55] | A-CAES | Developed advanced adiabatic compressed air energy storage options |

[56,57] | T-CAES: trigeneration compressed air energy storage | Developed advanced CAES system |

[21] | A-CAES: variable configuration system | System for variable fluctuations, e.g., from wind power |

[58] | CAES, A-CAES: Thermodynamics analysis | Efficient compressed heat utilization contributed significantly to energy conversion efficiency during charge/discharge. Electrical efficiency of 71.8% |

[38,59,60] | CAES: Integration with various renewable energy sources | Specific system for renewable sources |

[61] | AA-CAES: Above-ground pilot with air storage (100 m^{3} tanks) and TES (pressurized water) | Efficiency of 22.6% |

[62,63] | AA-CAES: Underground Swiss pilot with 1942 m^{3} rock cavern | Sensible and latent TES at temperatures as high as 550 °C |

[36,41,50,52,64,65] | AA_CAES: Theoretical modelling | Incorporated phenomena such as real gas effects, variable turbomachinery efficiency, and temperature-dependent thermophysical properties |

[54] | A-CAES: Environmentally friendly system. Examined thermodynamic and economic aspects as well as transient models of the TES tanks. | Using low-cost, off-peak electricity for charging and generating during peak demand gave round trip energy efficiency (61.5%) and exergy efficiency (68.2%) with a payback period of 3.5 years |

Method of Enhancing Heat Transfer | Impact |
---|---|

A process of injecting small liquid droplets into the air at a high mass flow rate while being compressed. | The compression efficiency can be increased by up to 98%. |

Compressing air using Pareto’s optimal trajectory in a liquid piston. | An increase of 10–40% in power density. |

Inserting porous inserts into a liquid piston at low pressures. | Increased power density by 39 times and increased efficiency by 18%. |

Inserting porous inserts into a liquid piston under high pressure. | 20 times increase in power density and a 23% increase in efficiency. |

Utilization of hollow spheres. | The peak air temperature of the system was reduced by 32 °C and the end-to-end efficiency of OCAES was increased by 9%. |

The OCAES uses spray cooling and porous media. | End-to-end efficiency improved by 17%. |

System | Temperature [°C] | Pressure in Cavern/Tank [MPa] | Round-Trip Efficiency [%] | Ref(s) |
---|---|---|---|---|

D-CAES | Inlet temperature for LP ^{1} ≥ 850.Inlet temperature for HP ^{2} ≥ 550 | P_{max,cavern} = 7.2P o _{peration} = 4.8–6.6 | η = 42 | [17,113] |

D-CAES (With recuperator) | Inlet temperature for LP ≈ 870 Inlet temperature for HP ≈ 540 | P o_{peration} = 4.5–7.4 | η = 54 | [113,114] |

D-CAES | The maximum temperature is 1050. Outlet temperature of LT is 583. Exhaust temperature from HRSC 95 | P = 6 | η = 51.1 (CAES-CC) η = 53.4 (Recuperated CAES) | [24] |

D-CAES | Inlet temperature of HP is 550 Inlet temperature of LP is 827 Temperature of exhaust gas is 204, Air temperature in cavern is 25 | P o_{peration,min} =4.2P o _{peration,max} = 7.2 | η ≈ 45 | [109] |

A-CAES | Operating temperature range is 90–200 | Two configurations were considered: one is 7.2 and the other is 15 | η = 56 | [51] |

A-CAES & I-CAES | Max. temperatures for A-CAES are 623 and 239 For single-stage and two-stage compression, respectively. Maximum temperature is 80 for I-CAES systems for both configurations | Two pressure ratios: for single-stage compression/expansion the ratio is 50 & (~5); for two-stage compression/expansion the ratio is 7.1 and 7.1 (~5) | A-CAES (Single-stage) η = 23.6 A-CAES (Two-stage) η = 48.6 I-CAES (Single-stage) η = 70.6 I-CAES (Two-stage) η = 73.9 | [34] |

A-CAES | Max. temperature is 400 | P_{max,cavern} = 6.6P _{min,cavern} = 4.6 | “Hypothetically” 79.2 if heat exchanger efficiency is 0.7 | [115] |

A-CAES | Exhaust temperature is 3 Air temperature at compressor outlet is 159. Air temperature at air turbine inlet 130. | P_{max,tank} = 3.5P _{min,tank} = 2.5 | ηs_{torage} = 57 | [69] |

A-CAES | Max. temperature is ≈150. Exhaust temperature is 15. | Pressure ratio 90 | η= 50–75 ^{3} | [116] |

I-CAES | Ideal isothermal constant temperature | P_{max} = 1 | η ≥ 90 | [33] |

I-CAES | Isothermal constant temperature. Temperature difference ≤ 5. | P o_{peration} = 20–35 | η= 74.8 ^{4} | [77] |

^{1}LP: Law pressure.

^{2}HP: High pressure.

^{3}The typical cycle efficiency depending on the number of stages and the efficiency of the turbine.

^{4}For entire wind & CAES system.

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**MDPI and ACS Style**

Rabi, A.M.; Radulovic, J.; Buick, J.M.
Comprehensive Review of Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) Technologies. *Thermo* **2023**, *3*, 104-126.
https://doi.org/10.3390/thermo3010008

**AMA Style**

Rabi AM, Radulovic J, Buick JM.
Comprehensive Review of Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) Technologies. *Thermo*. 2023; 3(1):104-126.
https://doi.org/10.3390/thermo3010008

**Chicago/Turabian Style**

Rabi, Ayah Marwan, Jovana Radulovic, and James M. Buick.
2023. "Comprehensive Review of Compressed Air Energy Storage (CAES) Technologies" *Thermo* 3, no. 1: 104-126.
https://doi.org/10.3390/thermo3010008