This paper evaluates the economic, energetic, and environmental feasibility of using two power generation units (PGUs) to operate a combined heat and power (CHP) system. A benchmark building developed by the Department of Energy for a full-service restaurant in Chicago, IL is used to analyze the proposed configuration. This location is selected since it usually provides favorable CHP system conditions in terms of cost and emissions reduction. In this investigation, one PGU is operated at base load to satisfy part of the electricity building requirements (PGU1), while the other is used to satisfy the remaining electricity requirement operating following the electric load (PGU2). The dual-PGU configuration (D-CHP) is modeled for several different scenarios in order to determine the optimum operating range for the selected benchmark building. The dual-PGU scenario is compared with the reference building using conventional technology to determine the economical, energetic, and environmental benefits of this proposed system. This condition is also compared to a CHP system operating following the electric load (FEL) and to a base-loaded CHP system, and it provides greater savings in operating cost, primary energy consumption, and carbon dioxide emissions than the optimized conditions for base loading and FEL.

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