Energy Management

Reaping the energy benefits of cogeneration

As you optimize operation of your cogeneration systems, investigate installation of duct burners.

By Riyaz Papar, energy columnist

All process plants need electrical power and thermal energy and almost always there is a concurrent demand for both of these energy streams. The ability to use one form of primary fuel (typically, natural gas) to simultaneously provide two forms of energy (thermal and power) is known as combined heat and power (CHP) or cogeneration. One of the most common forms of CHP is use of a natural-gas-fired gas turbine generator (GTG) operating in conjunction with a heat recovery steam generator (HRSG). The GTG provides electrical power and the HRSG provides steam at the required pressure.

Plants also have natural- or fuel-gas-fired boilers that generate steam at required pressure. The energy efficiency of boilers depends on several factors but primarily on the heat recovery equipment, excess-air controls and the boiler load. Most of these boilers have an operating energy efficiency of ~80–85%.

Now let’s take a look at the cogeneration system.

To learn more about cogeneration, read “Understand Cogeneration, Part 1” from Chemical Processing.

Free Subscriptions

Plant Services Digital Edition

Access the entire print issue on-line and be notified each month via e-mail when your new issue is ready for you. Subscribe Today. E-Newsletters

Get Plant Services delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday! Sign up for Plant Services' complimentary Smart Minute e-newsletter to get maintenance and reliability know-how you can put to use today, plus the latest manufacturing news from around the Web, special reports, and more. Learn more and subscribe for free today.