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RET Calculation Methodology: CHP

Abstract

This spreadsheet provides a calculation method to give an early indication of the viability of
installing a CHP plant in a development. It gives an estimate of the potential carbon dioxide
emission and cost savings based on hourly building energy loads.

CHP Description

Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plants simultaneously produce both electricity and useful
heat. They consist of an electrical generator often powered by a gas turbine or a gas-fired
combustion engine.

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RET Calculation Methodology: CHP

The excess thermal energy, which in a conventional plant would be wasted, is used in a
subsidiary system, providing low or medium temperature hot water (or, in some cases, steam)
for heating. This makes the overall energy efficiency far greater than that of a conventional
generator, and the total energy usage and carbon emissions for which a building is
responsible can be greatly reduced. As such, there are government incentives in place
(www.eca.gov.uk) which help make CHP an attractive option for many developments and
refurbishments.

Fuel Cell technology can also be used for CHP (and trigeneration) applications (see Fuel Cell
spreadsheet). Biomass CHP is also a possibility for schemes requiring an exemplar energy
strategy, however, most smaller projects are likely only to consider this technology if they
want to be a trial project.

CHP should not be used in isolation, as the load demand of a building changes throughout
the year while a CHP plant's output is often not so flexible. The plant is sized to meet a
portion of the load across the year while minimising wastage, with heat usually being the
limiting factor. In some cases, absorption chillers can be installed to take up some excess
heat and provide cooling, this is called trigeneration (CCHP) (see CCHP spreadsheet).

Calculation Method

Summary

The AdaptFM Renewable Energy Toolkit CHP calculation is based on the total available
hourly heat load from the building that could be provided by a CHP unit, as calculated in the
Profile Creator. On entering the CHP thermal size and unit turn down the calculation then
determines the hourly heat provided by the CHP to the building load available. The CHP
provides heat to the building or thermal store by either running between the peak output and
the minimum part load or turning off, depending on the heat load available. The calculation
will not allow the unit to waste heat.

Once the hourly thermal output has been determined the hourly electrical production is
determined according to the unit’s electrical output. This is either used within the building if
there is a building electrical load available or is exported to the grid.

Carbon savings are found by determining the reduction in the carbon emissions from a
reference system when using CHP. Heating and electrical load used onsite are taken into
account as well as the fuel used in the CHP. Electricity produced onsite and exported is also
accounted for in the carbon savings. The electrical efficiency of the unit will be dependant on
the unit size and manufacturer. These should be checked with actual manufacturers technical
sheets where possible.

The calculation has the added advantage of utilising an optimiser function. A graph can be
generated which outputs carbon savings and fuel cost savings for various CHP unit and user
defined Thermal Storage Tank sizes.

Calculation Process

Below is the calculation process including an example calculation (in blue) using the key
inputs defined. Within the calculation sheet, inputs are required in green cells and important
outputs are in yellow cells. The example calculation for the hourly data takes the figures at
9.30am on Wednesday 3rd January.

1. Define the Key Inputs to the calculation using the list below:

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RET Calculation Methodology: CHP

Input Unit Example


CHP Thermal Size kW 127 kW
CHP Heating Efficiency % 41%
CHP Electrical Efficiency % 34%
Max Turn Down Value of CHP % 50%
Percentage of Space Heating Load to be Met by CHP % 100%
Percentage of DHW Load to be Met by CHP % 100%
Thermal Storage Tank Radius m 1m
Thermal Storage Tank Height m 3m
Thermal Storage Tank ∆T °C 40°C
*CHP Unit Downtime per Annum % 10%
Downtime Start Date 180th day
CHP Capital Costs £ £120,000
CHP Maintenance Costs p/kWhelec 1.30 p/kWhr

* Downtime is an estimation of a mixture of planned maintenance and unplanned breakdown. The user can select
the ‘CHP Unit Downtime and Maintenance’ check box to modify the amount of downtime per month.

2. The main calculation is carried out in the hidden section ‘Calculation Data’ (select the tick
box to unhide). A box defining the ‘CHP System Data’ determines the maximum and
minimum heat power according to the inputs of CHP Thermal Size and Max Turn Down. The
CHP Electricity to Heat Ratio is found from the ratio of electrical to thermal efficiency.

‘Max Heat Power’ = ‘CHP Thermal Size’


Max Heat Power = 127 kW

‘Min Heat Power’ = ‘CHP Thermal Size’ * ‘Max Turndown’


Min Heat Power = 127 * 50% = 63.5 kW

‘CHP Electricity to Heat Ratio’ = ‘Electrical Efficiency’ / ‘Thermal Efficiency’


CHP Electricity to Heat Ratio = 34/41 = 82.9%

‘Storage size’ = ((π * (‘Storage Tank Radius’)2 * ‘Storage Tank Height’) * 4.2 * ‘Tank
∆T’) / 3.6
Storage size = ((π * 1.02 * 3) * 4.2 * 40) / 3.6 = 440 kWh

3. The Building Load Data from Profile Creator section contains the hourly load data
imported from the Profile Creator. CHP Building Loads are the hourly loads available for the
CHP to provide heat to. These are determined from the Building Load Data and the inputs of
Percentage of Space Heating Load to be Met and Percentage of DHW Load to be Met.

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CHP Usage determines whether the unit is in operation. The maintenance column indicates
the maintenance downtime according to the inputs made. The CHP use flag takes into
account whether a load has been supplied each hour by the CHP unit.

‘DHW Demand’ = ‘DHW’ * ‘Percentage of DHW Load to be Met by CHP’


DHW Demand = 118 * 100% = 118 kW

‘Space Heat Demand’ = ‘Space Heating’ * ‘Percentage of Space Heating Load to be


Met by CHP’
Space Heating Demand = 741 * 100% = 741 kW

‘Total CHP Heating Demand’ = ‘DHW Demand’ + ‘Space Heat Demand’


Total CHP Heating Demand = 118 + 741 = 859 kW

‘CHP Maintenance’ = If ‘Day of the Year’ < ‘Downtime Start Date’ Then 1 Else If ‘Day of
Year’ > ‘Downtime Finish Date’ Then 1 Else 0
‘CHP Maintenance’ = If (2.42 < 180) Then 1 Else If (2.42 > 198) Then 1 Else 0 = 1
‘CHP Use Flag’ = If ‘Total CHP Load’1 > 0 Then 1 Else 0
‘CHP Use Flag’ = If (127 > 0) Then 1 Else 0 = 1

4. CHP + Tank Heat Supplied calculates on an hourly basis the heat loads met by the CHP.
This is determined by the hourly load available and the maximum and minimum load that can
be provided by the specified CHP size. The hourly heat load met by the conventional gas
boilers is found by determining the remaining building load. The heat supplied by the storage
tank and the heat sent to the storage tank is also calculated in this section.

1
See further for calculation of ‘Total CHP Load’
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RET Calculation Methodology: CHP

‘Storage + Building Heat Load’ = ‘Total CHP Heating Demand’ + ‘Spare Tank Storage’
2
Storage + Building Heat Load = 859 + 440 = 1299 kW

‘Heat Load Met By CHP1’ = If (‘Storage + Building Heat Load’) > (‘Min Heat Power’)
Then Minimum of (‘Max Heat Power’) and (‘Storage + Building Heat Load’) Else 0
Heat Load Met By CHP1 = If 1153 > 63.5 Then Minimum of 127 and 1153 = 127 kW

‘Remaining Storage + Building Heat Load’ = ‘Storage + Building Heat Load’ – ‘Heat
Load Met By CHP1’
Remaining Storage + Building Heat Load = 1299 – 127 = 1172 kW

‘Total CHP Load’ = (‘Storage + Building Heat Load’ - ‘Remaining Storage + Building
Heat Load’) * ‘CHP Maintenance’
Total CHP Load = (1153 – 1026) * 1 = 127 kW

‘Heat Sent To Storage’ = Maximum of (‘Total CHP Load’ – ‘Total CHP Heating
Demand’) and 0
Heat Sent To Storage = Maximum of (127 – 859) and 0 = 0 kW

‘Remaining Building Heat Load’ = ‘Total CHP Heating Demand’ – ‘Total CHP Load’ +
‘Heat Sent To Storage’
Remaining Building Heat Load = 859 -127 + 0 = 732 kW

‘Heat Load Met By Storage’ = Minimum of ‘Remaining Building Heat Load’ and
‘Storage’Previous Hour
Heat Load Met By Storage = Minimum of 732 and 0 = 0 kW

‘Remaining Building Heat Load’ = ‘Remaining Building Heat Load’ - ‘Heat Load Met By
Storage’
Remaining Building Heat Load = 732 - 0 = 732 kW

‘Heat Met By Gas Boiler’ = ‘Remaining Building Heat Load’


Heat Met By Gas Boiler = 732 kW

‘CHP Total Heat Delivered’ = ‘Total CHP Heating Demand’ - ‘Heat Met By Gas Boiler’
CHP Total Heat Delivered = 859 – 732 = 127 kW

5. Heat Storage calculates the Heat Stored and the Storage available according to the hourly
load used from the storage tank and the hourly load supplied to the tank.
Loads Met By CHP calculates the total electrical and heating loads supplied to the building
by the CHP. Heating loads met follow a hierarchy of DHW followed by Heating.

2
Rounding error
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Loads Not Met By CHP calculates the hourly building loads not met by the CHP.

‘Storage’ = ‘Storage’Previous Hour + ‘Heat Sent To Storage’ – ‘Heat Load Met By Storage’
Storage = 0 + 0 - 0 = 0 kW

‘Spare Storage’ = ‘Storage size’ – ‘Storage’


Spare Storage = 440 - 0 = 440 kW

‘CHP DHW Met’ = Minimum of ‘CHP Total Heat Delivered’ and ‘DHW Demand’
CHP DHW Met = Minimum of 127 and 118 = 118 kW

‘CHP Space Heating Met’ = Minimum of (‘CHP Total Heat Delivered’ – ‘CHP DHW
Met’) and ‘Space Heat Demand’
CHP Space Heating Met = Minimum of (127-118) and 741 = 9 kW

‘Electricity Generated’ = ‘Total CHP Load’ * ‘CHP Electricity to Heat Ratio’


Electricity Generated = 127 * 82.9% = 105 kW

‘DHW Not Met’ = ‘DHW’ - ‘CHP DHW Met’


DHW Not Met = 118 - 118 = 0 kW

‘Space Heating Not Met’ = ‘Space Heating’ - ‘CHP Space Heating Met’
Space Heating Not Met = 741 - 9 = 732 kW

‘Space Heating Not Met’ = ‘Space Heating’ - ‘CHP Space Heating Met’
Space Heating Not Met = 741 - 9 = 732 kW

‘Electricity Imported’ = Maximum of (‘Electricity’ – ‘Electricity Generated’) and 0


Electricity Imported = Maximum of (157 – 105) and 0 = 52 kW

‘Electricity Exported’ = Maximum of (‘Electricity Generated’ – ‘Electricity’) and 0


Electricity Exported = Maximum of (105 – 157) and 0 = 0 kW

6. The remainder of the calculation is carried out in the main section of the sheet above the
calculation data. These calculations are summarised in the following sections. The calculation
Key Outputs are as follows:

Output Unit Example


CHP Electrical Size kW 105 kW
CHP Heating kWh/annum 291,617 kWh/annum
CHP Electricity Generated Onsite kWh/annum 242,145 kWh/annum

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CHP Electricity Used kWh/annum 180,306 kWh/annum


CHP Electricity Exported kWh/annum 61,839 kWh/annum
CHP Hours of Operation Hrs/annum 2,303 hrs/annum
CHP CO2 Produced Onsite kgCO2/annum 137,985 kgCO2/annum
CHP Energy Output kWh/annum 533,762 kWh/annum
Carbon Savings from CHP kgCO2/annum 66,903 kgCO2/annum
% Carbon Savings from CHP % 17.6%
Fuel Cost Savings from CHP £/annum 6,132 £/annum
% Fuel Cost Savings from CHP % 11.7%
Simple Payback Years 40 years

7. CHP Size summarises the electrical and thermal size of the specified unit. Thermal size is
input while the electrical size is calculated from the thermal size and the input electrical and
thermal efficiencies.

‘CHP Electrical Size’ = ‘CHP Thermal Size’ * ‘CHP Electricity to Heat Ratio’
CHP Electrical Size = 127 * 82.9% = 105 kW

8. CHP Output calculates the heating and electrical outputs from the specified unit. These
are calculated by summing together all the hourly results from the Calculation Data section to
produce annual totals. In addition the hours of operation, gas consumed by the CHP, carbon
dioxide emissions produced by the CHP and net fuel costs of the CHP.

‘CHP Heating’ = ‘Total Annual CHP DHW Met’ + ‘Total Annual Space Heating Met’
CHP Heating = 208,472 + 83,145 = 291,617 kWh/annum

‘CHP Electricity Generated Onsite’ = ‘Total Annual Electricity Generated’


CHP Electricity Generated Onsite= 242,145 kWh/annum

‘CHP Electricity Used’ = ‘Total Annual CHP Electricity Generated Onsite’ - ‘Total
Annual CHP Electricity Exported’
CHP Electricity Used = 242,145 – 61,839 = 180,306 kWh/annum

‘CHP Electricity Exported’ = ‘Total Annual Electricity Exported’


CHP Electricity Exported = 61,839 kWh/annum

‘CHP Electricity Exported’ (Cost) = ‘CHP Electricity Exported’ * ‘Cost Export Electricity’ /
100
CHP Electricity Exported = 61,839 * 2/100 = £1237

‘CHP Hours of Operation’ = ‘Total CHP Usage Flag’


CHP Hours of Operation = 2,303 hrs/annum

‘Gas into CHP Engine’ = ‘CHP Heating’ / ‘CHP Heating Efficiency’


Gas into CHP Engine = 291,617 / 41% = 711,261 kWh/annum

‘Gas into CHP Engine’ (Cost)= ‘Gas into CHP Engine’ * ‘Adjusted Gas Price Excluding
Climate Change Levy’ / 100
Gas into CHP Engine = 711,261 * 2.285/100 = £16,252

‘CHP CO2 Produced Onsite’ = ‘Gas into CHP Engine’ * ‘Gas Carbon Emissions Factor’
CHP CO2 Produced Onsite = 711,261 * 0.422 = 137,985 kgCO2/annum

‘CHP Net Fuel Costs’ = ‘Gas into CHP Engine’ (Cost) - ‘CHP Electricity Exported’
(Cost)
CHP Net Fuel Costs = 16,252 – 1,237 = £15,016

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RET Calculation Methodology: CHP

9. The Reference System calculations determine the carbon emissions and fuel costs for a
conventional system using the reference boiler, chiller and electrical generation efficiencies
input into the profile creator. The reference system calculations allow the carbon savings
using the CHP to be calculated.

‘Heating Required’ = ‘CHP Heating’


Heating Required = 291,617 kWh/annum

‘Gas Used’ = ‘Heating Required’ / Reference Boiler Efficiency


Gas Used = 269,607 / 84% = 347,163 kWh/annum

‘Heating Carbon Dioxide’ = ‘Gas Used’ * ‘Gas Carbon Emissions Factor’


Heating Carbon Dioxide = 347,163 * 0.194 = 67,350 kgCO2/annum

‘Heating Fuel Cost’ = ‘Gas Used’ * ‘Gas Unit Price’ / 100


Heating Carbon Dioxide = 347,163 * 2.3 / 100 = 7,985 £/annum

‘Electricity Used’ = ‘CHP Electricity Used’


Electricity Used = 180,306 kWh/annum

‘Electricity Exported’ = ‘CHP Electricity Exported’


Electricity Exported = 61,839 kWh/annum

‘Electricity Used Carbon Dioxide’ = ‘Electricity Used’ * ‘Onsite Electricity Generation


Carbon Emissions Factor’
Electricity Used Carbon Dioxide = 180,306 * 0.568 = 102,414 kgCO2/annum

‘Electricity Exported Carbon Dioxide’ = ‘Electricity Exported’ * ‘Onsite Electricity


Generation Carbon Emissions Factor’
Electricity Exported Carbon Dioxide = 61,839 * 0.568 = 35,124 kgCO2/annum

‘Electricity Used Cost’ = ‘Electricity Used’ * ‘Electricity Unit Price’ / 100


Electricity Used Cost = 180,306 * 7.3 /100 = 13,162 £/annum

‘Electricity Exported Cost’ = ‘Electricity Exported’ * ‘Electricity Export Unit Price’


Electricity Exported Carbon Dioxide = 61,839 * 2 / 100 = 1,237 £/annum

‘Reference System Carbon Dioxide’ = ‘Heating Carbon Dioxide’ + ‘Electricity Used


Carbon Dioxide’ + ‘Electricity Exported Carbon Dioxide’
Reference System Carbon Dioxide = 67,350 + 102,414 + 35,124 = 204,888 kgCO2/annum

‘Reference System Fuel Cost’ = ‘Heating Fuel Cost’ + ‘Electricity Used Cost’
Reference System Fuel Cost = 7,985 + 13,162 = 21,147 £/annum

10. CHP Savings calculates the carbon dioxide and cost savings as a result of using CHP in
the specified development.

‘Carbon Savings from CHP’ = ‘Reference System CO2’ – ‘CHP CO2 Produced Onsite’
Carbon Savings from CHP = 204,888 – 137,985 = 66,903

‘% Carbon Savings’ = ‘Carbon Savings from CHP’ / ‘Base Carbon’


% Carbon Savings = 66,903 / 379,768 = 17.6%

‘Fuel Cost Savings from CHP’ = ‘Reference System Fuel Cost’ – ‘CHP Net Fuel Costs’
Fuel Cost Savings from CHP = 21,147 - 15,016 = £6,132 per annum

‘% Fuel Cost Savings = ‘Fuel Cost Savings’ / ‘Energy costs with conventional supply’
% Fuel Cost Savings = 6,132 / 52,377 = 11.7%

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11. Economics calculates the total maintenance cost per annum for the specified CHP.

‘Total Maintenance Cost’ = ‘CHP Electricity Generated Onsite’ * ‘CHP Maintenance


Cost’ /100
Total Maintenance Cost = 242,145 * 1.3 / 100 = 3,148 £/annum

12. Output Information gives a final summary of the most important outputs calculated
above, including CHP Energy Export, CO2 Benefit, CO2 Reduction, Fuel Cost Saving and
Fuel Cost Reduction. In addition calculations take place to output the CHP Energy Output,
Energy Generated as a % of Total Energy Use, Simple Payback, Cost of CHP as a % of
Project and Carbon/Cost Ratio.

‘CHP Energy Output’ = ‘CHP Heating’ + ‘CHP Electricity Generated Onsite’


CHP Energy Output = 291,617 + 242,145 = 533,762 kWh/annum

‘Energy Generated % of Total Energy Use’ = ‘CHP Energy Output’ / ‘Total Building
Energy’
Energy Generated % of Total Energy Use = 533,762 / 1,581,320 = 33.8%

‘Simple Payback’ = ‘CHP Capital Costs’ / (‘Fuel Cost Saving’ – ‘Total Maintenance
Cost’)
Simple Payback = 120,000 / (6,132 – 3,148) = 40 years

‘Cost of CHP as % of Project’ = ‘CHP Capital Costs’ / ‘Total Development Cost’ * 1000
Cost of CHP as % of Project = 120,000 / 16,000 *1000 = 0.8%

‘Carbon/Cost Ratio’ = ‘% Carbon Savings’ / ‘Cost of CHP as % of Project’


3
Carbon/Cost Ratio = 17.6 / 0.8 = 23.49

13. The CHP Calculation Solver can be used to quickly assess the optimum sized CHP unit
4
for the building. Before the CHP Solver can be run the all the Key Inputs listed previously
must be entered into the sheet. Once these are entered click on ‘Solve CHP Strategy’. The
CHP Solver works by analysing the % Carbon Savings and % Fuel Cost Savings using a
range of 50 CHP thermal sizes up to the maximum. The results are then plotted and the
optimum unit size and carbon saving displayed to the user. If the results from the graph need
to cleared click on ‘Clear Graph’.

3
Rounding error
4
Excluding CHP Thermal Size, CHP Capital Costs and CHP Maintenance Costs
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Contact
Technical Support - Will Gibbs / Andy Sims
Software Support - Dr Matthew Pilgrim

Reference Documents

For further details on CHP the following references are available:

• Faber & Kell’s – Heating & Air-conditioning of Buildings 9th Edition – D R Oughton, S
Hodkinson
• CIBSE TM38: 2006 – Renewable Energy Sources in Buildings

Below are links to some of the documents relating to CHP on the AdaptFM Design
Guidance System:

• http://inform/adaptfm/dg/Docs/Building/Carbon%20saving%20with%20CHP%20(BSJ
%20CPD%20Module%20S6%20June%2007).pdf

• http://inform/adaptfm/dg/Docs/Building/Assessing%20CHP%20Feasibility%20(BSJ%
20CPD%20June07).pdf

• http://inform/adaptfm/dg/Docs/Building/Lowor%20Zero%20Carbon%20Energy%20So
urces%20Strategic%20Guide%20(ADL2%202006)%20Section%204%20-
%20CHP%20(Micro-CHP).pdf

For further reading and information go to http://inform/adaptfm/dg/default.aspx

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Commercially Available CHP

Two ranges of commercially available CHP units from Aircogen and Cogenco can be seen
below:

In addition links are available to Manufacturers Websites for further information:

• http://www.cogenco.co.uk/

• http://www.aircogen.co.uk/

• http://www.energ.co.uk/

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• http://www.vitalenergi.co.uk/

For further manufacturer information go to the Combined Heat and Power association web
pages http://www.chpa.co.uk/

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