Environmental concerns related to climate change are forcing many countries to consider implementing cogeneration of heat and power with centralized heating systems (i.e. district heating networks) which are becoming increasingly widespread in many countries. Combined heat and power (CHP) or cogeneration is the simultaneous production of electricity and useful thermal energy. The big interest this technology is receiving, both globally and locally, has its reason in the chance of reducing fuel consumption by enhancing energy production processes. The considerable amount of waste heat associated to traditional power stations is transformed into useful heat, which can be sent through the district network to houses and buildings for heating or cooling. Considering the pollution district heating reduce local pollutants such as dust, sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxides by replacing exhausts from individual boilers. In addition to the reduced use of fuels, far more effective pollution prevention and control measures can be taken in central production facilities.
The purpose of this paper is to present the results of the investigation for the installation of a small-scale CHP plant for District Heating purposes in a small municipality in Northern Greece.
Initially the heat and electricity demands were estimated based on a combination of historical consumption data, the construction features of the buildings and the weather conditions in the region.
A pipe network was designed and sized appropriately and the utilization of a CHP plant was studied.
Additionally, a number of various fuel options were considered such as natural gas, oil, pulverised coal and biomass from crop and forest residues, and also animal waste. The availability in biomass in the local region was estimated and it was found that it could cover a small percentage of approximately 5% of the required heating power.
Finally, a techno-economic analysis was carried out and the CO2 reduction benefits were estimated.