With a conviction that the major challenge for the renewable energy market lies in being able to store energy, CMI is today opening at Seraing (Belgium), the largest pilot installation for the storage of green energy in Europe.


This installation, called 'MiRIS' (Micro Réseau Intégré Seraing), composed of 6,500 solar panels, (with a peak production capacity of renewable electricity of 2 mW, the equivalent of 500 to 600 households for a whole year), is allied to batteries of different technologies. This equipment is connected to an Energy Management System, the veritable brain of the installation, developed by ULiège in collaboration with CMI. With this station, CMI is aiming to study the functioning of the different batteries according to production and usage profiles. The information gained will enable the performance of integrated electricity production/storage/management systems offered to its clients by CMI to be optimised. MiRiS represents an investment of some 10 million Euros.

MiRIS is the largest pilot installation in Europe. Its 6,500 photovoltaic solar panels totalling 10,000 square metres, are installed on the roofs of the industrial halls and the car-ports at the Seraing site of CMI. The 'MiRIS' site is equipped with 4 different batteries and an Energy Management System, the veritable brain of the installation. Developed by ULiège in collaboration with CMI, starting from the user profile and electricity market conditions, this system ensures at all times the automatic and optimal management of the whole of the installation.

MiRiS has been constructed in barely nine months. It is now operational and connected to the electricity distribution network. The energy produced will be used for the electricity consumption of the headquarters of CMI, or fed into the distribution network in a controlled manner thanks to the intelligent system developed in collaboration with the University of Liège.

With this pilot station CMI is aiming to better understand the functioning of the different batteries according to production and usage profiles. The information gained will enable the performance of integrated electricity production/storage/management systems offered by CMI to be improved. Apart from the fact that this innovative project should cover the electricity needs of its headquarters, it will also enable CMI to acquire mastery of injecting electricity into the supply network.

A major player in the energy transition

With the MiRIS project, CMI is aiming at the economic optimisation of sources of renewable energy, as Jean-Michel Gheeraerdts, President of CMI Energy, underlines:"Energy storage and management solutions are a tremendous driver for increasing recourse to green energies and which get rid of their principal failing: intermittent production. This is also an October 26th 2018 2/3 alternative solution to diesel generators in regions unconnected to the electricity supply, a solution which delays investment in parts of the network, optimising photovoltaic or wind-power systems, acting as a catalyst enabling participation in primary or secondary reserve markets."

Jean-Luc Maurange, CEO of the CMI Group: "MiRiS forms part of the vocation of CMI to bring to market innovative solutions which respond to the challenges of modern-day society. Our engineers are recognised and the region is rich in competent and motivated partners for establishing exportable solutions. In 2018 alone, we have launched 3 pilot projects: the first, Medix, involves the recuperation of medical residues from water at Hermalle-sous-Argenteau hospital (Liège, Belgium). The second, HayrPort, is in collaboration with Liège Airport, and involves equipping the airport with installations for the production, distribution and use of green hydrogen to enable 100% clean eco-mobility. And now there's MiRiS, for storing renewable energy."