The Power behind Cutting-Edge Healthcare

March 25, 2013
Award-winning cogeneration system fuels a medical campus.

An advanced cogeneration plant fueling care for 103,000 inpatients and over 2.4 million outpatients every year has been recognized by the EPA for its highly efficient generation and pollution reduction.

The Medical Area Total Energy Plant (MATEP) in Boston generates 46 mW annually to fully power the entire Longwood Medical and Academic Area, which includes five hospitals, numerous biomedical and pharmaceutical research clinics, and several teaching institutions affiliated with Harvard Medical School.

MATEP’s combined heat and power system includes two natural gas-fired combustion turbines equipped with heat recovery steam generators, which together produce up to 360,000 pounds of steam every hour, plus 24 mW of electricity. The steam is then used in turbines to generate another 22 mW of electricity, heat water for space heating, and produce chilled water for space cooling.
With a 75% operating efficiency, MATEP’s combined heat and power setup requires about 24% less fuel than supplying electricity from the grid and producing steam with a boiler.

It also prevents the emission of about 117,500 tons of carbon dioxide annually – the equivalent of the electricity used by 13,000 homes.

The plant features notable contingency planning that allows the Medical Area to stay operational and fully functional if the grid is disrupted. It can also utilize fuel oil if the natural gas supply is cut off.

MATEP was honored by the EPA as part of its ENERGY STAR CHP Award, which highlights combined heat and power systems that reduce emissions and use at least 10% less fuel than comparable systems that generate heat and power separately.

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