Theses and Dissertations


Nelson Fumo

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Mago, J. Pedro

Committee Member

Srinivasan, K. Kalyan

Committee Member

Chamra, M. Louay

Committee Member

Steele, Glenn W.

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


Cooling, Heating and Power (CHP) systems have been recognized as a key alternative for thermal energy and electricity generation at or near end-user sites. CHP systems can provide electricity while recovering waste heat to be used for space and water heating, and for space cooling. Although CHP technology seems to be economically feasible, because of the constant fluctuations in energy prices, CHP systems cannot always guarantee economic savings. However, a well-designed CHP system can guarantee energy savings, which makes necessary the quantification of non-conventional benefits from this technology in order to offset any economic weakness that can arise as consequence of energy prices. Some aspects that could be included in a non-conventional evaluation are: building energy rating, emission of pollutants, power reliability, power quality, fuel flexibility, brand and marketing benefits, protection from electric rate hikes, and benefits from promoting energy management practices. This study focuses on two aspects: building energy rating and emission reduction of pollutants, related to CHP system energy performance. Two methodologies have been developed in order to estimate the energy related benefits from CHP technology. To determine the energy performance, a model has been developed and implemented to simulate CHP systems in order to estimate the building-CHP system energy consumption. The developed model includes the relevant variables governing CHP systems such as: type and size of the components, individual component efficiencies, system operating mode, operational strategy, and building demand for power, heating, and cooling. The novelty of this model is the introduction of the Building Primary Energy Ratio (BPER) as a parameter to implement a primary energy operational strategy, which allows obtaining the best energy performance from the building-CHP system. Results show that the BPER operational strategy always guarantees energy savings. On the other hand, results from a cost-oriented operational strategy reveal that for critical design conditions, high economic savings can be obtained with unacceptable increment of energy consumption. For Energy Star Rating and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Rating, results show that CHP systems have the ability to improve both ratings.