Combined Heat and Power (CHP)
In conventional electricity generation, heat is produced as a by-product and usually released (wasted) into the atmosphere. Combined Heat and Power (CHP) systems channel this extra heat to useful purposes so that usable heat and electricity are generated in a single process, therefore CHP is a highly fuel efficient technology. CHP projects can use fossil fuels, but increasingly wood fuels are being used to run CHP projects. This makes them very efficient and renewable.
CHP can also be incorporated into a tri-generation scheme to provide heating, power and cooling from the same source. Trigeneration is sometimes referred to as CCHP (combined cooling, heating, and power generation). Here some excess heat produced is cooled by ‘absorption chillers’ linked to the CHP system. This produces chilled water for cooling, which is particularly useful for schemes which involve a large level of air conditioning.
However the ideal CHP\Trigeneration heat loads come from continuous process industries, where steady heat and power supplies are needed throughout the year. The economics of CHP are highly dependant upon the exact relationship to heat and power needs and these must be in a defined ratio before CHP can be deployed in a viable and economic manner.
For more information on Biomass CHP, email Steve Luker.
SEI operates a grant scheme for CHP projects, for further details see here.