Mannheim, August 11, 2014
Cogeneration deserves greater attention
With its lead topic "The Energy Turnaround: Opportunities and Risks", the Rhine-Neckar Region Chamber of Commerce (IHK) Magazine is providing an in-depth look at the current discussion on aspects and planned changes to the German Renewable Energy Sources Act (EEG) and its implementation by industry.In an interview, Willy Schumacher, CEO of Caterpillar Energy Solutions GmbH, presents the position of the Mannheim-based company and talks about the advantages of decentralized electricity supply.
He calls for cogeneration to receive greater attention and for combined heat and power (CHP) to play a more vital role in the energy turnaround in Germany and in the inner-European energy market.
For Schumacher, who has been with Caterpillar for 24 years, the eco-friendly cogeneration plants open up many options. This means, for example, that different gas types such as biogas, coal mine gas, wastewater digester gas, and natural gas of course, can be converted into electricity on-site, whereby the waste heat generated can be directly utilized instead of being lost in the environment. With simultaneous electricity and heat production, the plants reach overall efficiency levels of up to 95 percent. Both electricity and heat can be used on-site or fed into the local power grid or district heating system.
The combined generation of electricity or the use of power and heat or cold (CHP and CCHP respectively) saves up to 60% of the energy required compared to separate generation by power plants with additional boilers. A major benefit is that cogeneration power plants with gas engines can be easily integrated into existing systems for combined heat and power and cogeneration power plants in a cost-effective way.
The interview with additional articles on the topic of the
Renewable Energy Sources Act, in the special edition of the Rhine-Neckar
Chamber of Commerce (IHK) Magazine: