Money-Saving CHP Plant Planned for Major UK Naval Base

Rendering of the new plant. Credit: BAE Systems

The UK Ministry of Defense plans to install a new combined heat and power plant at Portsmouth Naval Base, the largest military defense consumer of energy in the country. BAE Systems will develop the facility as part of a nearly $16 million amendment to a contract first awarded to the company in 2014.

A CHP system — also known as cogeneration — produces heat from a single fuel source and can retain excess heat that would otherwise get wasted, BAE Systems says in its announcement about the plant. A former boiler house at the naval base will be converted into the plant, saving as much as $5.21 million annually.

Cogeneration should help the naval base meet increased energy demands from the Royal Navy’s Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier, which has undergone testing over the summer and is set to arrive at Portsmouth in two weeks. The $3.91 billion aircraft carrier is Britain’s largest warship, weighing 65,000 metric tons and stretching 900 feet.

CHP has become an increasingly popular option for organizations looking to lower emissions and cut electricity costs while still providing reliable power, steam, hot water, and cooling. The UK government says that current CHP users typically save around 20% of their energy costs.

The CHP plant at Portsmouth Naval Base is expected to be completed before the end of next year.

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