What is Combined Heat and Power CHP?

Combined heat and power (CHP) does exactly what it says in the title: it creates both heat and electricity within one single, highly efficient process. It generates electricity whilst capturing the usable heat that is produced in this process.

The CHP process can be applied to both renewable and fossil fuels – it is essentially a process that takes a traditional energy production system and increases its efficiency as it captures other forms of energy that are normally wasted in the generation of electricity. The specific technologies employed, and the efficiencies they achieve will vary, but in every situation CHP offers the capability to make more efficient and effective use of valuable primary energy resources.

Whilst CHP is largely used for industrial and commercial energy generation systems, there are several Micro-CHP systems on the market:
Micro-CHP is a specific form of CHP designed for individual households. As a replacement for a standard domestic gas boiler, it generates power mainly for consumption in the home but also for expert, alongside heat for space and water heating.

To see what Micro CHP Products Cernunnos supplies and installs please see here.

Benefits of CHP

(as defined by the CHP Association: www.chpa.co.uk):

CHP provides the following direct benefits:

  • minimum 10% energy savings, but typical markedly higher
  • cost savings of between 15% and 40% over electricity sourced from the grid and heat generated by on-site boilers
  • minimum 10% CO2 savings for good quality natural gas CHP in comparison to conventional forms of energy generation
  • high overall efficiency – up to 80% or more at the point of use
  • additional guarantee of continuity in energy supplies for operator & consumer
  • proven and reliable technology with established supplier base

These in turn deliver a range of beneficial outcomes:

  • a reduction in the cost of energy, improving the competitiveness of industry and business, helping alleviate fuel poverty and lowering cost in delivery of public services
  • enhanced security of supply, making energy go further, through more efficient use of fuel – regardless of whether the fuel is renewable or fossil
  • increased flexibility and reliability of energy supply, both nationally and locally – as CHP can complement and enhance other forms of energy generation
  • flexible and responsive heat supplies – the thermal energy (heat or cooling) produced by CHP can be easily stored and later delivered to meet demand
  • reduced overall demand from centralised, such as large scale coal or gas fired power stations – thus reducing stress on the electricity grid