The growing worldwide demand for less polluting forms of energy has led to a renewed interest in the use of micro combined heat and power (CHP) technologies in the residential sector. The operation of micro CHP system results in simultaneous production of heat and power in a single household based on small energy conversion units. The heat produced may be used for space and water heating and possibly for cooling load if combined with an absorption chiller, the electricity is used within the house. In this paper, two typical micro CHP alternatives, namely, gas engine and fuel cell for residential buildings, are analyzed. For each facility, two different operating modes including minimum-cost operation and minimum-emission operation are taken into consideration by employing a plan and evaluation model for residential micro CHP systems. The analysis results show that the fuel cell system is recognized as a better option for the examined residential building from both economic and environmental points of view. With the operation considering optimal economic benefits, annual energy cost is reduced by about 26%. On the other hand, while maximizing the environmental merits, annual CO 2 emissions are reduced by about 9%.
Energy and Buildings – Elsevier
Published: Jun 1, 2010
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