Combined cooling, heat, and power (CCHP) systems—also called trigeneration systems - are the combination of cogeneration plants and absorption chillers. They offer an optimal solution for generating air conditioning and/or refrigeration. Absorption chillers provide an economic and environmental alternative to conventional refrigeration with compression chillers. Combining high efficiency, low-emission cogeneration equipment with absorption chillers enables maximum total fuel efficiency, elimination of HCFC/CFC refrigerants, and reduced overall air emissions.

Trigeneration systems supply energy in three forms:
1. Electricity
2. Heat
3. Chilled water

Absorption chillers provide an economical and environmental alternative to conventional refrigeration. Combining efficiency, low emission power generation equipment with absorption chillers allows for maximum total fuel efficiency, elimination of harmful refrigerants and reduced overall air emissions. There are a number of different configurations of CHP units where refrigeration can be derived. These include:

Absorption Chillers
● Operation using hot water
● Operation using steam
● Direct heat via combustion

Combining a CHP or cogeneration plant with an absorption refrigeration system allows utilisation of seasonal excess heat for cooling. The hot water from the cooling circuit of the plant serves as drive energy for the absorption chiller. The hot exhaust gas from the gas engine can also be used as an energy source for steam generation, which can then be utilised as an energy source for a highly efficient, double-effect steam chiller. Up to 80% of the thermal output of the cogeneration plant is thereby converted to chilled water. In this way, the year round capacity utilisation and the overall efficiency of the cogeneration plant can be increased significantly.

Advantages Vs Conventional Refrigeration
Absorption based refrigeration technology offers the most established and economic solution for reduced emission, air conditioning systems.

● Operated with heat, utilising relatively inexpensive ‘excess energy’
● Production of electricity that can be fed into the power grid or used to cover the plant’s electricity requirements
● During cold seasons, the heat can be utilised to cover heat requirements
● Absorption chillers have no moving parts, there for there is no wear and maintenance costs are low.
● Absorption system has noiseless operation
● Low operating costs and lifecycle costs
● Using water as a refrigerant replaces the use of ozone damaging substances.

Across the world, there is a new emphasis on projects that combine climate protection and economical primary power generation. Absorption chiller technology represents an optimal solution for a year-round efficient source of cooling and heat, especially when used in conjunction with a gas engine cogeneration plant. More than 500 systems with Jenbacher gas engines in combination with absorption chillers have been delivered worldwide.
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