Cogeneration engines are used to generate electricity from the combustion of fossil fuels. Electricity to power the 1.5 million square feet 3M Austin Center administrative and research and development facility is produced on-site by two Cooper-Bessemer cogeneration engines. Each engine is capable of producing 6 megawatts of power. Mechanical modification of the engines was performed in order to reduce emissions and to reduce fuel consumption.
The cogeneration of electricity comes from powering a steam turbine with the excess steam produced from the exhaust of the two natural gas engines. This increases the efficiency of generating electricity from 35% to 65%. Besides providing steam for the steam turbine, the heat transfer water is also used for heating the Austin Center.
The cost for the modification was approximately $330,000. The modification of the cogeneration engines produced savings of $126,000 per year in energy costs. The U.S. EPA issued an award for this significant pollution prevention project.
Details of ReductionsSource: TCEQ