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Boosting Energy Efficiency in Chemical Manufacturing: A Look at Cogeneration

By Ray Ratheal Eastman Chemical Co. |

Many chemical manufacturing processes require large amounts of energy, and chemical companies are faced with the constant challenge of determining how to use that energy as sustainably as possible. More and more chemical companies are prioritizing a range of energy efficiency measures aimed at decreasing energy use and costs while reducing environmental impact. One of the most promising energy-efficiency technologies being used in the chemical process industries (CPI) today is cogeneration — or combined heat and power (CHP). Cogeneration offers financial, operational and environmental benefits by concurrently producing electricity and heat from a single energy source. It has the potential to convert more than 80% of the energy obtained from fossil fuel into power and steam (Table 1). Table 1. Potential cogeneration efficiency Type Efficiency, % Type Efficiency, % Steam turbine 80 Gas turbine 75 Diesel engine 75 Fuel cell 73 Natural gas 75 Microturbine 70 Eastman Chemical Co. is one organization leveraging cogeneration to boost the efficiency of its manufacturing operations. The company today meets more than 90% of its global electricity needs with cogeneration, resulting in 40% less fuel used, and significantly…
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