Tecogen has launched its smart Tecochill hybrid-drive air-cooled chiller at AHR 2023, the largest HVAC tradeshow in North America. The hybrid-drive chiller seamlessly combines two power sources, economical natural gas, and electric power, from the grid, offering customers up to 50% lower operating costs compared to alternative chillers, as well as dual-power-source resiliency. When the hybrid-drive is powered by the chiller’s integral natural gas engine, it produces chilled water for air-conditioning plus free engine heat that is recovered to produce usable hot water. Competing solutions are less efficient, have a higher greenhouse gas footprint, have a higher energy operating cost, and require a separate boiler to produce hot water.
The hybrid-drive can track inputs from the electric power grid to enable customers to optimize economic savings and/or greenhouse gas reductions. Marginal grid power generation in the United States is currently predominantly fossil fuel-based, particularly during peak demand periods, so customers able to utilize both the chilled water and hot water generated by the chiller will benefit from both the lowest operating cost and the lowest greenhouse gas footprint. The hybrid-drive can maximize greenhouse gas reductions by using power from the electric grid when the grid incrementally is powered by renewable energy and can switch to engine power when the grid is generating higher greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, when grid power is more expensive during periods of high demand, the hybrid-drive can switch to operating on engine power and then switch back to operating on the grid if prices become lower, enabling customers to optimize operations as electric grid costs and greenhouse gas emissions fluctuate.
The hybrid-drive can also rely on engine power in the event of grid power outages, providing cooling for critical process applications when the electric grid is unavailable. The hybrid-drive is expected to be an excellent fit for applications such as controlled environment agriculture (CEA), healthcare, education, chiller rental, and industrial process cooling. Investments in the hybrid-drive chiller may also allow customers to benefit from a 40% federal Investment Tax Credit.
“We are excited to launch our hybrid-drive chiller next month, which will expand our Tecochill product offering and open up a larger market segment for our chillers, which already deliver significant economic and environmental benefits for customers. We look forward to meeting potential customers and developers at AHR 2023 in Atlanta,” said Benjamin Locke, CEO of Tecogen.