Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Mago, Pedro J.

Committee Member

Fumo, Nelson

Committee Member

Luck, Rogelio

Committee Member

Srinivasan, Kalyan K.

Date of Degree


Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access


Mechanical Engineering

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


James Worth Bagley College of Engineering


Department of Mechanical Engineering


Combined heat and power (CHP) systems produce electricity and useful heat from fuel. When power is produced near a building which consumes power, transmission losses are averted, and heat which is a byproduct of power production may be useful to the building. That thermal energy can be used for hot water or space heating, among other applications. This dissertation focuses on CHP systems using natural gas, a common fuel, and systems serving commercial buildings in the United States. First, the necessary price difference between purchased electricity and purchased fuel is analyzed in terms of the efficiencies of system components by comparing CHP with a conventional separate heat and power (SHP) configuration, where power is purchased from the electrical grid and heat is provided by a gas boiler. Similarly, the relationship between CDE due to electricity purchases and due to fuel purchases is analyzed as well as the relationship between primary energy conversion factors for electricity and fuel. The primary energy conversion factor indicates the quantity of source energy necessary to produce the energy purchased at the site. Next, greenhouse gas emissions are investigated for a variety of commercial buildings using CHP or SHP. The relationship between the magnitude of the reduction in emissions and the parameters of the CHP system is explored. The cost savings and reduction in primary energy consumption are evaluated for the same buildings. Finally, a CHP system is analyzed with the addition of a thermal energy storage (TES) component, which can store excess thermal energy and deliver it later if necessary. The potential for CHP with TES to reduce cost, emissions, and primary energy consumption is investigated for a variety of buildings. A case study is developed for one building for which TES does provide additional benefits over a CHP system alone, and the requirements for a water tank TES device are examined.