The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced the addition of combined heat and power modeling capabilities to the Renewable Energy Integration and Optimization (REoptTM) Lite web tool. This no-cost tool is a useful resource for users that wish to improve a site’s energy efficiency and resilience by evaluating its renewable energy, conventional on-site generation, and energy storage potential.

Combined heat and power (CHP)―sometimes called cogeneration―is an integrated set of technologies that allow for the simultaneous, on-site production of electricity and heat. CHP technologies enable the use of thermal energy that would otherwise go to waste. The high efficiency of CHP systems decreases carbon emissions and saves money by reducing demand for grid electricity and offsetting the need to generate steam or hot water with a separate boiler. CHP can also improve a site’s ability to operate during a grid outage.

REopt Lite’s new CHP functionality can be customized to site-specific circumstances, helping facilities weigh the benefits of installing a CHP system or optimize their existing on-site energy systems. Users can model and size CHP systems in isolation, compare CHP to renewable energy and battery storage options, or evaluate multiple, complementary systems to address a range of electric and thermal energy needs.

To learn more about REopt Lite’s new CHP modeling capabilities, register for an informational webinar hosted by the Clean Energy Group Resilient Power Project on Tuesday, March 2, 2021, at 2:00 p.m. ET. A recording will be shared on the REopt website after the event.

The REopt Lite CHP project, funded by DOE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO), is just one example of the office’s support for the deployment of CHP systems. AMO’s CHP-related technical partnerships work to transform the market for CHP through ten regional Technical Assistance Partnerships (TAPs), an eCatalog of packaged CHP systems, project profiles, and many other resources. AMO’s CHP experts worked closely with the REopt Lite team at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Colorado School of Mines, and Clean Energy Group to ensure the best technical representation of CHP within the model.

REopt Lite, hosted by NREL, is based on the Laboratory’s REopt platform, which researchers use to optimize energy systems to meet cost savings, resilience, and energy performance goals. DOE’s Federal Energy Management Program funds the existing REopt Lite model.

Learn more about DOE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office.