ACI has the capability to design and construct a system to produce both heat and electricity. This system is known as cogeneration. The concept uses a primary energy source such as natural gas to create heat and electricity simultaneously. The term combined heat and power is used to describe this process.
Cogeneration operates on the recovery and use of heat waste produced during the generation of electricity. In a majority of electric power plants, the heat waste is lost. This results in significantly lower operating efficiencies than with cogeneration. Natural gas cogeneration technologies offer customers the ability to use small units of gas, which includes all of the components for a cogeneration system. Facility managers can also use high efficiency industrial turbines or steam turbine systems with natural gas. These systems can range from 2.2 kilowatts to several hundred megawatts.
Natural gas insures that cogeneration is a clean burning process. This is because natural gas produces much less sulfur dioxide particles and nitrogen oxides than a coal or oil-based system does.