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Opportunities for Waste Heat Recovery at Contingency Bases

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Technical Report

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U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) Champaign United States

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The energy requirements of contingency bases CBs involved in U.S. military operations on every continent are met almost exclusively with the use of diesel generators, which are relatively inefficient both in terms of fuel consumption and the large amounts of waste energy generated during their operation. Tactical generators are currently loaded only to 30 to 40 capacity, due in large part to the sizing of generators to cover large electrical loads like electric heating of space and water. This work was undertaken to estimate the amount of available waste heat that could be captured and reused to heat or cool buildings and provide hot water while reducing generator fuel demand. It was found that the use of otherwise wasted thermal by-product of the diesel generator for space and water heating allows loads to be consolidated so the numbers and sizes of generators can be dramatically reduced. The use of cogeneration can lead to total fuel savings of nearly 20. Waste heat from five 60 kW generators can supply water heating for an entire 300 PAX contingency base, and in austere conditions, one 30 kW generator can provide up to 1.75 gpm of instantaneous hot water.

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