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Internal combustion engine powered biogas

Cogeneration, the combined production of electricity & heat (hot water/steam) is one of the promising technologies to meet  energy efficiency targets and lower gas emissions.

The purpose of cogeneration is to  simultaneous product electricity and heat. The electricity produced is consumed locally or sold on the national grid. The heat will be used for process heat and/or DHW heat (Domestic Hot Water).

The prime advantage of cogeneration is to increase production unit efficiency from 24-40%, electricity generation only,  to 80-90% in cogeneration mode; thus maximizing efficient use of resources.

 Cogeneration engines are available in a powers ranging from a few tens of kW to 3 MWe electric plants. For the most part, cogeneration has been utilized for small commercial plants and residential applications.


Biomass energy technologies, especially when speaking of gas fuel production (bio methanation; gasification), are well adapted to cogeneration such that the environmental gains are important when compared to fossil fuel usage. Cogeneration is practical and feasible in wood drying manufacturing plants as well as processing units generating biological organic waste streams (slaughterhouses, sewage plants, food industries, breweries, etc.). This technology is particularly well adapted for remote off-grid locations; and/or for developing countries having high electricity costs ($/KWh) derived from diesel fuel powered generator sets.

Most consumers with special needs heat also needs electricity. Any structure having a regular consumption of heat present a theoretical potential for cogeneration:

  • Hotels, hospitals, schools, swimming pools, nursing homes, industries engaged in the drying (wood, dairy, detergents, etc..), pharmaceutical and food industries, office buildings and housing or heating networks (municipal sector).

However, the choice and design of technology based needs are crucial to ensure successful implementation of a cogeneration plant.

Cogeneration is a form of energy production compatible with sustainable development and optimal management of natural resources. A cogeneration plant does not fully replace a boiler, it usefully complements.

Cogeneration is an energy that will promote a better return on fossil fuels.

Source : GE Energy