Research, Development and Demonstration of Micro-CHP System for Residential Applications

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ECR International and its joint venture company, Climate Energy, are at the forefront of the effort to deliver residential-scale combined heat and power (Micro-CHP) products to the USA market. Part of this substantial program is focused on the development of a new class of steam expanders that offers the potential for significantly lower costs for small-scale power generation technology. The heart of this technology is the scroll expander, a machine that has revolutionized the HVAC refrigerant compressor industry in the last 15 years. The liquid injected cogeneration (LIC) technology is at the core of the efforts described in this report, ... continued below

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Mayer, Karl March 31, 2010.

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ECR International and its joint venture company, Climate Energy, are at the forefront of the effort to deliver residential-scale combined heat and power (Micro-CHP) products to the USA market. Part of this substantial program is focused on the development of a new class of steam expanders that offers the potential for significantly lower costs for small-scale power generation technology. The heart of this technology is the scroll expander, a machine that has revolutionized the HVAC refrigerant compressor industry in the last 15 years. The liquid injected cogeneration (LIC) technology is at the core of the efforts described in this report, and remains an excellent option for low cost Micro-CHP systems. ECR has demonstrated in several prototype appliances that the concept for LIC can be made into a practical product. The continuing challenge is to identify economical scroll machine designs that will meet the performance and endurance requirements needed for a long life appliance application. This report describes the numerous advances made in this endeavor by ECR International. Several important advances are described in this report. Section 4 describes a marketing and economics study that integrates the technical performance of the LIC system with real-world climatic data and economic analysis to assess the practical impact that different factors have on the economic application of Micro-CHP in residential applications. Advances in the development of a working scroll steam expander are discussed in Section 5. A rigorous analytical assessment of the performance of scroll expanders, including the difficult to characterize impact of pocket to pocket flank leakage, is presented in Section 5.1. This is followed with an FEA study of the thermal and pressure induced deflections that would result from the normal operation of an advanced scroll expander. Section 6 describes the different scroll expanders and test fixtures developed during this effort. Another key technical challenge to the development of a long life LIC system is the development of a reliable and efficient steam generator. The steam generator and support equipment development is described in Section 7. Just one year ago, ECR International announced through its joint venture company, Climate Energy, that it was introducing to the USA market a new class of Micro-CHP product using the state-of-the-art Honda MCHP gas fired internal combustion (IC) engine platform. We now have installed Climate Energy Micro-CHP systems in 20 pilot demonstration sites for the 2005/2006 heating season. This breakthrough success with IC engine based systems paves the way for future advanced steam cycle Micro-CHP systems to be introduced.

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  • Report No.: None
  • Grant Number: FC26-04NT42216
  • DOI: 10.2172/1011855 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1011855
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc841120

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

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Creation Date

  • March 31, 2010

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • Dec. 1, 2016, 4:28 p.m.

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Mayer, Karl. Research, Development and Demonstration of Micro-CHP System for Residential Applications, report, March 31, 2010; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc841120/: accessed May 26, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.