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Economical Efficiency of Combined Cooling Heating and Power Systems Based on an Enthalpy Method


  • Yan Xu

    (School of Management Science and Engineering, Shanxi University of Finance and Economics, Shanxi 030006, China)

  • Wenyu Li

    (School of Economics and Management, North China Electric Power University, Beijing 102206, China)

  • Jiahai Yuan

    (School of Economics and Management, North China Electric Power University, Beijing 102206, China)


As the living standards of Chinese people have been improving, the energy demand for cooling and heating, mainly in the form of electricity, has also expanded. Since an integrated cooling, heating and power supply system (CCHP) will serve this demand better, the government is now attaching more importance to the application of CCHP energy systems. Based on the characteristics of the combined cooling heating and power supply system, and the method of levelized cost of energy, two calculation methods for the evaluation of the economical efficiency of the system are employed when the energy production in the system is dealt with from the perspective of exergy. According to the first method, fuel costs account for about 75% of the total cost. In the second method, the profits from heating and cooling are converted to fuel costs, resulting in a significant reduction of fuel costs, accounting for 60% of the total cost. Then the heating and cooling parameters of gas turbine exhaust, heat recovery boiler, lithium-bromide heat-cooler and commercial tariff of provincial capitals were set as benchmark based on geographic differences among provinces, and the economical efficiency of combined cooling heating and power systems in each province were evaluated. The results shows that the combined cooling heating and power system is economical in the developed areas of central and eastern China, especially in Hubei and Zhejiang provinces, while in other regions it is not. The sensitivity analysis was also made on related influencing factors of fuel cost, demand intensity in heating and cooling energy, and bank loans ratio. The analysis shows that the levelized cost of energy of combined cooling heating and power systems is very sensitive to exergy consumption and fuel costs. When the consumption of heating and cooling energy increases, the unit cost decreases by 0.1 yuan/kWh, and when the on-grid power ratio decreases by 20%, the cost may increase by 0.1 yuan/kWh. Finally, some suggestions were offered from the perspective of the power grid, gas sector reform, heating and cooling systems and other aspects to promote the use of combined cooling heating and power systems in the future.

Suggested Citation

  • Yan Xu & Wenyu Li & Jiahai Yuan, 2017. "Economical Efficiency of Combined Cooling Heating and Power Systems Based on an Enthalpy Method," Energies, MDPI, vol. 10(11), pages 1-16, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jeners:v:10:y:2017:i:11:p:1821-:d:118224

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Guozheng Li & Rui Wang & Tao Zhang & Mengjun Ming, 2018. "Multi-Objective Optimal Design of Renewable Energy Integrated CCHP System Using PICEA-g," Energies, MDPI, vol. 11(4), pages 1-26, March.

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