Energy Savings by CHCP Plants in the Hotel Sector


Hotels have long been seen as large consumers of energy, by the nature of the service they offer on a 24 hours basis. It is not surprising therefore that energy conservation should be taken very seriously.

The structure of the hotel sector is different in various countries due to differentiated demands - the business demand and the tourism demand. The first represents essentially the demand for hotels situated within the cities, the second regards also hotel situated outside the cities in tourist areas.

As use of energy in the hotel sector represents a large part of the total running cost, there is much to gain from energy saving opportunities. This project will examine different types of energy use within the hotel sector, and different manners of transforming energy in thermal units. The possibility of applying different
combined heating cooling and power systems (CHCP) to the hotel sector will be examined, as function of both the type and the dimension of the hotels.

In some countries, following National Energy Acts, restriction on private power production were removed. This results in a new market for combined heat and power syst ems, developed to replace fired boilers and reduce peak demand charges for electricity supply for such enterprises as hotels.

CHP offers two prime advantages; using energy very efficiently and at the same time converting part of the fuel used into high-value electricity. CHP systems involve the simultaneous release of electrical (or mechanical) power and heat in the form of low pressure steam or water.

The assessment of the economic viability of CHP and the prediction of their thermodynamic performances involves specific exercises.

In this project the use of mini CHP in combination with absorption chillers for the hotel sector will be explored. Mini CHP itself are able to achieve operating overall thermal efficiency in excess of 90% on the gross caloric value of the fuel. A mini CHCP offers a multiple benefit package: the opportunity to reduce or eliminate bills costs, energy savings to customers and finally the reduction or elimination of the need to invest in new central power station or transmission infrastructure with savings in the public sector borrowing requirements, which should result in lower electricity prices.

Pay-back periods of about three years can be achieved for a CHP and then substantial savings can be made on the combined energy bills. As there are now many separate CHP set and absorption chillers working there is a rich experience in designing and operating such systems.

EU has supported projects through the SAVE programme that had to do with cogeneration. None of these projects involved the hotel sector and moreover the use of absorption chillers, in combination with CHP plants. This project will be a step forward in the assessment of energy savings through the use of CHP and absorption chillers in the EU hotel industry.

The estimated energy consumption in EU hotels is:

A rough estimation (based on some case studies) of the energy savings through the use of CHP is 12-50% with a reasonable average of 20%. Therefore the energy saving potential in the EU hotels is es-timated 0,2*39=7,8 TWh. The savings are referred to the primary energy supplied.

The dissemination of the results will be made through: special seminars for hotel managers, newsletters, Internet sites. Due to the fact that energy makes up the largest proportion of hotel running costs after staff, it is expected that hotel managers and associations will show a high degree of interest.

Project phases

  1. Analysis of the structure of the hotel sector
  2. Energy auditing methodology for hotel sector
  3. Energy auditing and case studies
  4. The absorption cycle analysis
  5. Evaluation of the appropriate Combined Heat, Cooling and Power (CHCP) plant
  6. Dissemination


The main result of the project will be a guideline that will ease the decision on the installation of CHP plants in hotels. This guideline will give data on