Overview of CHP Technologies
This fact sheet provides an overview of different CHP technologies, including reciprocating engines, gas turbines, microturbines, fuel cells, and steam turbines. Combined heat and power (CHP), also known as cogeneration, produces both electricity and thermal energy on-site, replacing or supplementing electricity provided from a local utility and fuel burned in an on-site boiler or furnace. CHP systems increase energy security by producing energy at the point of use, and significantly improve energy efficiency. When electricity and thermal energy are provided separately, overall energy efficiency ranges from 45–55%. While efficiencies vary for CHP installations based on site-specific parameters, a properly designed CHP system will typically operate with an overall efficiency of 65–85%.