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University Cogeneration Initiative As A Class Project Opportunity

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1997 Annual Conference


Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Publication Date

June 15, 1997

Start Date

June 15, 1997

End Date

June 18, 1997



Page Count


Page Numbers

2.457.1 - 2.457.3



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Paper Authors

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Mary Kathryn Mathis

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Duane Stucky

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Ahad S. Nasab

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2633

University Cogeneration Initiative as a Class Project Opportunity

Mary Kathryn Mathis, Ahad S. Nasab, Duane Stucky Middle Tennessee State University

Introduction Energy management and budgeting has long been a major concern of academic institutions which usually operate on a shrinking operations budget and a generally rising demand due to increase in student enrollment and addition of new buildings and facilities and laboratories.

In recent decades cogeneration has been looked upon as one way of managing the energy costs as well as replacing older technology with the more environmentally-friendly hardware. Like many other systems, decision on such a major investment depends on rate of return and market forecast of utility price fluctuations.

Cogeneration system Cogeneration systems installed on university campuses usually generate a portion of the total electric consumption with the exhaust heat used in bottoming cycles to provide other effects such cooling through the use of chillers.

The existing system at MTSU is comprised of a coal-fired plant which is used for winter heating as well as summer cooling through the use of chillers. The university was faced several problems with regards to the existing plant such as obsolescence of the components, lack of pollution control equipment to comply with upcoming EPA standards, and inadequate reserve capacity

For the last two years, the administrative staff of the Middle Tennessee State University with the annual enrollment of nearly 18,000 students have taken on the task of studying the feasibility of a cogeneration system for this campus. An energy consulting firm was hired to examine the concept of installing a gas turbine and generator to produce about half the campus electrical needs with the waste heat from the turbine to produce steam needed for campus buildings heating and cooling needs. Preliminary analysis has shown that the proposed cogeneration system will pay for itself in savings in about ten years. The new plant has the advantage of being much more efficient and environmentally- friendly than the existing plant as well as being able to serve the campus energy needs for the foreseeable future. A schematic of the MTSU cogeneration system is shown in Figure 1.

Student Involvement Students enrolled in several environmental science classes at MTSU have the unique opportunity to be involved in a sizable university project in which an existing steam generation plant is being replaced by a modern cogeneration facility. Students associated with the project work very closely with the engineers and administrators to

Mathis, M. K., & Stucky, D., & Nasab, A. S. (1997, June), University Cogeneration Initiative As A Class Project Opportunity Paper presented at 1997 Annual Conference, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 10.18260/1-2--6854

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