Cogeneration and trigeneration
Cogeneration is used to produce electricity and heat at the same time within a single system starting from one fuel source, either fossil or renewable. The production of electricity and heat with separate processes generally does not permit use of the heat produced by the combustion process, which is released into the atmosphere. Cogeneration instead includes the recovery and use of the heat produced by the combustion process, guaranteeing a more efficient use of the primary combustion source.
A valid example of a cogeneration application is the production of electricity with a generating set composed of an engine coupled to an alternator. The heat generated by the engine combustion process is conveyed and used by a heat generator for the production of heat in the form of carriers including:
- hot water or steam for various civil and industrial uses;
- chilled water downstream from a later generation via absorption cooling units.
The use of the generated heat makes it possible to define the assembly as a “cogeneration plant” if only heat is produced, and “trigeneration plant” if heat and cold is produced, and in general makes it possible to obtain better performance of the system.
NATURAL GASThe cogeneration systems are equipped with engines from 400 to 4,300 kWe supplied with biogas or natural gas, used modularly to satisfy the request of any overall power.
Energy efficiency of a cogeneration plant
The use of a cogeneration plant on an industrial or civil level results in a primary energy savings of even more than 30%, compared to separate generation of electricity and heat, and makes it possible to produce carriers which can be fully used in numerous processes.
Producing electricity and heat while consuming less thus makes it possible to significantly reduce energy bill costs, guaranteeing an important competitive advantage for companies; another important effect is the significant decrease of gaseous emissions, which makes a significant contribution towards saving the environment.
Advantages of an Intergen cogeneration and trigeneration plant
Intergen designs and installs turnkey plants using engines with top efficiency performance, with a total output which can exceed 87%, this makes it possible to save money, guaranteeing a fast return on the investment.