Technology company, ENTRNCE, describes its new ‘Carbon Matcher’ as ‘a unique data platform’ that calculates the half-hourly carbon footprint of onsite combined heat and power (CHP) versus conventional methods of heat and grid electricity.
Currently licensed to EuroSite Power – a ‘UK leader’ in CHP and other onsite generation technologies, and reportedly a first of its kind, the new tool ‘proves CHP’s continuing role as an energy transition technology’, ENTRNCE says. The Carbon Matcher is being developed by ENTRNCE in cooperation with EuroSite Power, ‘to help estates and energy professionals make the sustainable business case for maintaining their existing CHP systems or investing in new assets’.
ENTNCE explained: “Grid carbon intensity varies hour by hour, due to the intermittency of renewables such as solar and wind, and the varying supply from fossil generators. Until now, comparing the carbon footprint of onsite CHP with grid electricity has been inaccurate, relying on average grid carbon intensity figures. The Carbon Matcher is a web-based data platform which captures real-time data on the GHG emissions produced by a CHP in operation, every 30 minutes. It then compares this with the actual carbon intensity of the grid during those times. It shows the number of half-hourly periods when the CHP in operation was cleaner – or dirtier – than the grid. Estates decision-makers get a clear picture of the total carbon saved when the CHP unit was operating. They can also make predictions based on real historical data, to make the business case for new CHP.”
Dubbing CHP ‘a highly efficient method of generating electricity and heat simultaneously’, ENTRNCE says the technology is ‘much more efficient than traditional power generation, which often wastes heat by simply releasing it into the atmosphere’, and ‘particularly cost-effective’ for sites with a high heat demand, such as hospitals
Although conventional CHP operates using natural gas as a fuel source, the Carbon Matcher shows which times of the day it is still less carbon-intensive than receiving electricity from the grid, which – depending on the time of day – can still have a high proportion of fossil fuel sources.
Jaron Reddy, UK & Ireland manager at ENTRNCE, said: “The clean energy transition won’t happen overnight, but will accelerate if we can help energy users understand the true carbon footprint of their onsite generation assets. The Carbon Matcher gives an accurate picture of how well CHP performs – giving Estates directors the transparency they need to make informed decisions on energy investments. Besides that, there is a strong case for hydrogen and CHPs. Organisations can use the Carbon Matcher to monitor the progress they are making in decarbonising their assets.”