Energy department
Measurement systems, production, conversion, storage of thermal and electrical energy, fuel cell systems

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With around forty members (teachers and/or researchers, engineers and PhD students) our THERMIE team is a pivotal focus point for four complementary scientific areas associated with three transdisciplinary themes, all in direct relation with the SHARPAC team.

The team thus benefits from great scientific coherence and latitude, bringing together specialists in power engineering, electrical engineering, optics and flow metrology. This special feature, and this strength, thus give the team the necessary aptitude to participate in the study, sizing and development of innovative industrial systems in the energy field, and to take its place at the test benches of fundamental research.

Goals and Research Areas

The THERMIE team’s work revolves around four pivotal scientific areas, namely:

› Metrology and Instrumentation in Fluidics and Thermal Science: development of specific measuring methods and sensors. Testing of a new fabrication technique for micro-thermocouples based on wires with a diameter ranging from 0.5 μm to 52 μm. This technique assures FEMTO-ST a leading position in the fabrication of these probes;

› Thermal energy systems: the study of complex thermal energy systems. This term refers to devices or processes in which other physical phenomena modify the balance of heat flows and temperatures. Two complementary approaches are envisaged: one a global systems approach and the other more local and phenomenological;

› Heat engines: the study of particular heat engines, external heat input engines (Stirling Ericsson), thermoacoustic and magnetocaloric devices. Within this area the team models, designs, produces, tests and transfers the technology of the different engines being studied;
The stakes are high for society in this particular area of energy production and in the context of sustainable development, and are of major concern, both in Europe and in emerging countries. These different devices may contribute, each one within a specific niche, to the energy mix of the future: electricity production, heat and cold, and alternative motorization;

› Complex flows: the study of complex flows such as hydrodynamic flows in presence of ultrasounds, the monophasic flows of different compositions, alternating gaseous and liquid flows both with and without heat transfer, or of supersonic jets.


The team’s strength is its expertise in the design, sizing and modeling—thermal as well as thermodynamic—of innovative heat engines and fundamental or industrial test benches.

In both fundamental research and industrial development, the THERMIE team can design, develop and implement diverse processes for energy systems. To be noted in particular are visualization processes and optic diagnosis methods in complex flows, processes for fine measurement of temperature in situ and thermal flows at fluid-solid interfaces, along with (micro)flow or pressure measurements. The team’s metrology is developed within very narrow geometric ranges and is thus neither inertial nor intrusive.