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Engie investment in water refrigerant technology

FRANCE: Engie New Ventures, the energy provider’s venture capital subsidiary, has invested in Alpinov X, a Grenoble-based start-up using water as the refrigerant in a new cooling technology.

The Alpinov X technology employs a patented “turbo-cryo-pump” process, adopted from the aerospace industry, which enhances the differences in latent heat and saturation vapour pressure. In doing so, it is said to make it possible to increase the energy efficiency of cold production by nearly 30% compared to the best compressors on the market.

The company has already developed the technology to produce snow for ski resorts and is now said to be developing its use to enable the functioning of district cooling grids and data centres. 

The company has already developed a 500kW prototype and, in partnership with Engie, intends to develop and market a higher-capacity machine within a few years.

“For Engie, the world leader in cooling networks and an operator of data centres, this strategic partnership dedicated to a clean technology is fully in line with our roadmap aimed at speeding up the decarbonisation of our solutions to serve our customers,” said Cécile Prévieu, Engie’s deputy CEO in charge of energy solutions activities.

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