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Chapter 2

Distributed Generation Plants

2.1 Combined Heat and Power Plants

Combined heat and power (CHP) or cogeneration systems are most promising as distributed energy resources (DERs) for microgrid (MG) applications. Their main advantage is energy-efficient power generation by judicious utilization of waste heat. Unlike fossil-fueled power plants, CHP systems capture and use the by-product heat locally for domestic and industrial/process heating purposes. Heat produced at mod- erate temperatures (100180 8C) can also be used in absorption chillers for cooling. Simultaneous production of electricity, heat, and cooling is known as trigeneration or polygeneration.

2.1.1 Introduction

By capturing excess heat, the CHP system allows better usage of energy than con- ventional generation, potentially reaching an efficiency of more than 80 compared with that of about 35 % for conventional power plants. It is most efficient when the heat is utilized locally. Overall efficiency is reduced if heat is to be transported over long distances using heavily insulated pipes, which are both expensive and ineffi- cient. On the other hand, electricity can be transmitted over much longer distances for lesser energy loss. Thus, CHP plants can be located somewhat remotely from their electrical loads, but they must always be located close to the heat loads for better performance. CHP plants are commonly employed in district heating systems of big towns, hospitals, prisons, oil refineries, paper mills, and industrial plants with large heat loads.

Use of CHP plants has been found to lead to 35 % reduction in primary energy use compared to conventional power generation and heat-only boilers, 30 % reduction in emission with respect to coal-fired power plants and 10 % reduction in emission with respect to combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) plants.

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015 47 M.S. Mahmoud and F.M. AL-Sunni, Control and Optimization of Distributed

Generation Systems, Power Systems, DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-16910-1_2

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