Combined Heat and Power to More than Double Worldwide within a Decade

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Combined heat and power, a technology used in many microgrids, is expected to more than double in capacity over the next nine years, according to a new report by Navigant Research.

Grid modernization efforts are spurring today’s CHP growth, which is likely to result in 74.4 GW installed worldwide, up from 32.7 GW now, Navigant says.

Missionscritical facilities, such as hospitals, data centers and research facilities, are increasingly installing CHP to guarantee supply and improve energy efficiency. (For more on this, see’s free eport, The Energy Efficient Microgrid.)

In all, Navigant expects  nearly 43,000 commercial CHP projects to be installed from 2015 through 2024.

“With energy markets undergoing significant change, commercial CHP is gaining increased traction as a flexible solution that can deliver a range of benefits to the grid, end users, and governments,” said Brett Feldman, senior research analyst with Navigant Research.  “The effort to modernize the grid and make it more resilient is driving CHP adoption at the policy level, beyond individual site considerations.”

The market also is gaining momentum as more companies introduce standardized commercial products and governments offer CHP incentives to help meet a range of goals — from improving grid reliability to cutting greenhouse gases.

At the same time, several factors slow CHP development. A large gap exists between technical and economic potential for CHP. About 441 billion square feet of building floor space could technically accommodate CHP. But CHP’s high upfront capital costs keep the technology out of reach for all but a fraction of the space, Navigant said.

Navigant also points out other factors necessary to create a favorable environment for CHP, including high or volatile spark spreads, cooperative utilities, and relatively high thermal requirements

Key worldwide players noted by Navigant are: 2G ENERGY; Aegis Energy Services,  Ameresco, Capstone Turbine; Caterpillar (Solar Turbines), Cogenra Solar, Constellation Energy, Cummins Power Generation, Dresser-Rand, FlexEnergy, FuelCell Energy, Fuji Electric, GE Power & Water, Honeywell International, IntelliGen Power,  MTU Onsite Energy, MWM GmbH, Tecogen, Viessmann Group, and Wärtsilä.

More information on the Navigant report,  “Combined Heat and Power for Commercial Buildings,” is here.

Get the free Microgrid Knowledge Special Report on Microgrids and CHP.

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About Elisa Wood

Elisa Wood is the chief editor of She has been writing about energy for more than three decades for top industry publications. Her work also has been picked up by CNN, the New York Times, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal Online and the Washington Post.