Under the cranes and scaffolding of the construction site of the Coeur de Ville district, in Issy-les-Moulineaux, a community in the southwestern suburban area of Paris, France, a network of pipes and machines promises an alternative to air conditioning, which is very polluting, thanks to geothermal energy.
Installed in the basements, the system, designed and produced by Engie Solutions, will use water at 15 degrees C, drawn 35 meters underground, to produce cold, but also heat in winter, thanks to machines called “thermofrigopumps”.
Another network using geothermal energy is being installed in Saint-Denis, to cool the Olympic village in 2024. In a context of global warming and aging of the population, “we are not talking about a need for cold comfort, but a need for sanitary refrigeration, “says Aurélie Lehericy, Deputy Managing Director of Engie Solutions Villes & Collectivités.
Every year, heat islands form in cities: the temperature increases locally because of pollution, and also from the heat released by air conditioning systems. The cooling network would limit the formation of these islands, avoiding the use of individual air conditioning on the 105,000 square meters of buildings in the heart of the city.
In total, the district’s heating and cooling network will use a little over 70% of renewable energy. For the rest, electricity will be needed to run most of the machines, and gas boilers will be installed as back-up for very cold periods.