Micro-cogeneration is a developed technology aiming to produce electricity and heat close to the final users, with the potential, if designed and operated correctly, to reduce both the primary energy consumption as well as the associated greenhouse gas emissions when compared to traditional energy supply systems based on separate energy production. The distributed nature of this generation technology has the additional advantages of (i) reducing electrical transmission and distribution losses, (ii) alleviating the peak demands on the central power plants, and (iii) diversifying the electrical energy production, thus improving the security of energy supply. Micro-cogeneration devices are used to meet both electrical requirements and heat demands (for space heating and/or hot water production) of a building; they can be also combined with small-scale thermally fed or mechanically/electrically driven cooling systems. Many micro-cogeneration units are already commercialized in different countries (such as Japan, Germany, United Kingdom, etc.) and in recent years several researches have been carried out in order to advance the design, operation, and analysis of this technology. Currently the use of commercial micro-cogeneration units in applications such as hospitals, leisure facilities, hotels, or institutional buildings is well established. The residential cogeneration industry is in a rapid state of development; the market remains not fully mature, but interest in the technology from manufacturers, energy utilities, and government agencies remains strong.
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