BRAINTREE, Mass. - The collaborative effort between American Honda Motor Co. and Massachusetts-based Climate Energy LLC has resulted in the first residential test installation of a unique, new combined heat and power (CHP) system.

At the Braintree, Mass., residence of Bernard Malin, the Climate Energy micro-sized combined heat and power (Micro-CHP) system is using cogeneration technology with natural gas to provide high-efficiency residential heating with the added benefit of producing electric power.

Honda supplies its compact home-use cogeneration unit to Climate Energy, which in turn, combines it with a furnace or boiler as a supplemental system to conventional space heating and electric power in new and existing homes. Designed primarily for detached single-family homes, the unit generates up to three kilowatts of thermal output per hour and one kilowatt of electricity.

The complete Climate Energy Micro-CHP system supplies more than 85 percent efficiency in converting fuel energy into useful heat and electric power, say the companies.

"This represents a significant improvement over conventional heating appliances and grid-supplied electric power, and will ultimately provide consumers with a savings in their utility bills," said Steve Bailey, vice president of Honda Power Equipment, which is American Honda's division responsible for overseeing its involvement in the project.

The system is also expected to provide a 30 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions as compared with conventional heating appliances and grid-supplied electricity.

"Honda's relationship with Climate Energy is setting a new direction for the future of home heat and power generation," said Bailey. "We expect residential installations of the Micro-CHP system to become widespread as electric utility companies work to meet the nation's ever-growing demand for electric power."

Publication date: 03/20/2006