The utilisation of waste heat from power plants for fresh water generation is an ideal option for maximising economical and environmental benefits.
For communities with scarce drinking water resources, it is becoming increasingly attractive to combine power and fresh water generation. The waste heat from the power generation is utilised to evaporate sea water or saline water in vacuum distillation units thereby extracting potable fresh water, leaving salts in a brine fraction.
Through the use of multiple level distillation technology, the waste heat can be used repeatedly in sequential stages to yield substantial amounts of fresh water, before being dissipated to the environment.
As desalination otherwise would require either heat generated from primary energy or the use of electricity, cogeneration of power and water leads to improved overall energy utilisation.
Waste heat can be utilised for generating chilled water through installation of absorption chillers at a power plant.
The cogeneration of cooling and power significantly increases the fuel utilisation at the generating plant and has an additional advantage. Supply of chilled water will substitute air-conditioning usage, thereby reducing the peak power consumption in the area.
Triple generation - Power, Heating and Cooling
Simultaneous triple generation of Power, Heat and Cooling is possible by the use of absorption chillers, which when driven by high temperature waste heat, can provide both cooling (chilled water) and heating (hot water) at an intermediate temperature level.