CHP · Cogeneration · Conservation · Efficiency · electric grid · Energy Savings Plan · Net Metering · renewable energy · Resilience

Implementing Combined Heat and Power Projects

CHP reduces the environmental impact of power generation by promoting the use of efficient, clean, and reliable approach to generating power and thermal energy from a single fuel source.

CHP can increase operational efficiency and decrease energy costs, while reducing the emissions of greenhouse gases, which contribute to global climate change.

Objective is to save time and money, reduce business risk and environmental impacts, and improve the power reliability of your facility in five steps:

o   Qualification Determine whether CHP is worth considering at your facility

o   Level 1 Feasibility Analysis Identify project goals and potential barriers. Quantify technical and economic opportunities while minimizing time and effort

o   Level 2 Feasibility Analysis Optimize CHP system design, including capacity, thermal application, and operation. Determine final CHP system pricing and return on investment

o   Procurement Build a CHP system according to specifications, on schedule and within budget

o   Operation & Maintenance Maintain a CHP system that provides expected energy savings and reduces emissions by running reliably and efficiently

projects designed to meet specific operational needs and integrate seamlessly into existing mechanical and electrical systems

Economic suitability for CHP is based on current and future fuel costs and utility rates; planned new construction or heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment replacement; and the need for power reliability at the site.

CHP project economics are greatly affected by utility policies at the local state and federal level

The Technical Potential for CHP is based on the coincident demand of power and thermal energy. Power can include both electricity and shaft power, which can be used for mechanical purposes. Thermal demand can include steam, hot water, chilled water, process heat, refrigeration, and dehumidification. A CHP system can be designed to convert waste heat into various forms of thermal energy to meet different facility needs, including heating hot water in the winter and chilling water in the summer.

Operations and Maintenance $0.005/kilowatt-hour (kWh) – $0.015/kWh for maintenance, depending on type of equipment and operations and maintenance (O&M) procurement approach; possible cost for energy consultant to negotiate fuel purchase, depending on system size and in-house capabilities.

Benefits CHPs achieve efficiencies of 60 to 80 percent, compared to average fossil-fueled power plant efficiencies of 33 percent in the United States. These translate to:

• Reduced total fossil fuel use.

• Lower operating costs.

• Reduced emissions of regulated air pollutants.

• Reduced emissions of greenhouse gases.

• Increased reliability and power quality.

• Reduced grid congestion and avoided distribution losses.

CHP and biomass/biogas funding opportunities

Financial incentives, such as grants, tax incentives, low-interest loans, favorable partial load rates (e.g., standby rates), and tradable allowances.

Regulatory treatment that removes unintended barriers to CHP and biomass project development, such as standard interconnection requirements, net metering, and output-based regulations. 

State and federal incentives applicable to CHP systems, such as direct financial incentives or favorable regulatory treatment.

Find out if your facility is a good candidate for CHP

Build Operate Transfer · CHP · Cogeneration · Conservation · Efficiency · electric grid · Energy Savings Plan · Net Metering · renewable energy · Resilience


Solar Cogeneration and Net Metering Systems

A cogeneration plant often referred to as a combined heat and power plant is tasked with producing electricity and thermal energy in the form of heat or steam, or useful mechanical work, such as shaft power, from the same fuel source.

Micro-CHP engine systems are currently based on several different technologies: Internal combustion engines, Stirling engines, Fuel cell, Microturbines, Steam engine/Steam motor using either water or organic chemicals such as refrigerants.

Micro combined heat and power or mCHP applies to single or multi-family homes or small office buildings in the range of up to 50 kW. Local generation has the potential for a higher efficiency than traditional grid-level generators since it lacks the 8-10% energy losses from transporting electricity over long distances as well as 10–15% energy losses from heat transfer in district heating networks due to the difference between the thermal energy carrier – hot water – and the colder external environment.

Most Systems use natural gas as the primary energy source and emit carbon dioxide. A micro-CHP system usually contains a small fuel cell or a heat engine as a prime mover used to rotate a generator which provides electric power, while simultaneously utilizing the waste heat from the prime mover for a building’s heating, ventilation, and air conditioning. A micro-CHP generator delivers electricity as the by-product or may generate electricity with heat as the by-product. 

Micro-CHP systems have been facilitated by recent technological developments of small heat engines

Type 2008 2012 2015 2020
Electrical efficiency at rated power 34% 40% 42.5% 45%
CHP energy efficiency 80% 85% 87.5% 90%
Factory cost $750/kW $650/kW $550/kW $450/kW
Transient response (10%–90% rated power) 5 min 4 min 3 min 2 min
Start-up time from 20 °C ambient temperature 60 min 45 min 30 min 20 min
Degradation with cycling < 2%/1000 h 0.7%/1000 h 0.5%/1000 h 0.3%/1000 h
Operating lifetime 6,000 h 30,000 h 40,000 h 60,000 h
System availability 97% 97.5% 98% 99%

CPVT Concentrated photovoltaics and thermal also called CHAPS combined heat and power solar, is a cogeneration technology used in concentrated photovoltaics that produce electricity and heat in the same module. The heat may be employed in district and water heating, air conditioning, process heat or desalination.

Net metering micro-CHP systems achieve much of their savings by the value of electrical energy which is replaced by auto produced electricity. A generate-and-resell model supports this as home-generated power exceeding the in-home needs is sold back to the electrical utility. This system is efficient because the energy used is distributed and used instantaneously over the electric grid.

Tell us about Your Energy Savings Plan

America · Build Operate Transfer · Business · CHP · Cogeneration · Conservation · Efficiency · electric grid · Energy Savings Plan · Historic District · Historic Towns · Logistics · Net Metering · renewable energy · Resilience

Saving Energy on Main Street

Energy Service Companies Savings Performance Contracts ESA Payments and ESCO Guarantees

Energy Services Agreements – ESAs – are pay-for-performance, off-balance sheet financing solutions that allows customers to implement energy efficiency projects with zero upfront capital expenditure. As in the case of power purchase agreements – PPAs – equipment is installed, owned and operated by the vendor who sells the saved power to the customer.

Red Wing MNESAs are the Energy Efficiency Equivalent of a Power Purchase Agreement

Energy Service Companies – ESCos – provide designs and implementation solutions for energy savings projects, retrofitting, energy conservation, outsourcing, power generation and supply.

Energy Savings Performance Contracts – ESPCs – accelerate investment in cost effective energy conservation measures without up-front capital costs. ESPCs are partnerships between a property owner/operator and an ESCo which conducts a comprehensive energy audit to identify improvements to save energy, designs and constructs the project as well as arranges the necessary financing.

An ESCO Guarantees the Improvements that Generate Energy Cost Savings

Energy Savings result from lighting upgrades, building automation system and controls. A Flexible Contractual Tool for retailers looking to stabilize utility costs as well as achieve longer term benefits by buying out the contract and take ownership of installed equipment.

main streetEnergy Management for Small and Medium-sized Commercial Buildings

ESA Payments are operating expenses designed to be off-balance sheet financing solutions with regular payments similar-to a utility bill.

Outputs Quality and Achievements of Specific Measurable Performance Standards 

aberdeen buildingBenefits resulting from the application of ESAs include energy efficiency, water conservation, emissions reduction and streamlined contract funding for energy management projects, through access to private-sector expertise, built-in incentives to provide high-quality equipment, and project commissioning infrastructure improvements. Project management ensures building efficiency and new equipment without upfront capital costs as well as energy and related operation and maintenance cost saving guarantees.

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Business · CHP · Cogeneration · Conservation · Efficiency · electric grid · Energy Savings Plan · Net Metering · water quality

Energy Efficiency and Water Conservation in the Hospitality Industry

digital meters smart grids plug and process integrated water systems

Digital Metering & Smart Grids in Small Towns and Rural Communities. Smart Meters enable two-way communication between the meter and the central system; unlike home energy monitors, smart meters can gather data for remote reporting.

Gas meterWith the inception of electricity deregulation and market-driven pricing, utilities have been looking for a means to match consumption with generation. Smart meters provide a way of measuring site-specific information, allowing utility companies to introduce different prices for consumption based on the time of day and the season.

Plug and Process Loads in Hospitality Properties Hotels Apartments Farmhouses and Villa Rentals Plug and Process Loads PPLs consume about one third of primary energy in buildings. PPL efficiency has become pertinent in achieving aggressive energy targets.

Water ResourcesIntegrated Water Systems in Small Towns and Rural Communities. Smart Water Technology remote monitoring and control of water pipes and plants help reduce water distribution losses, improve smart energy use for water management and reduce maintenance costs.

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