Heat Rate Analysis & Financial Benefits

1. Heat Rate Analysis Description

Prior to widespread energy industry deregulation under the PURPA Act of 199X, small commercial and institutional purchasers of energy had limited discretion over internal, real-time facility tracking of electrical power consumption. With the advent of advanced digital meters, sophisticated application- specific database software, and low-cost web and serial communications technologies, the facilities manager now has access to detailed information regarding all aspects of energy consumption within the facility. Energy Management Information Systems (EMIS) provide real-time tracking and trending of a variety of electrical parameters such as kilowatt (kW), kilowatt-hour (kWh), kilovolt-ampere-reactive (KVAR), power factor (PF), voltage, current and phase data. This data is made available in a wide variety of graphical and tabular formats, and can provide extensive monitoring capabilities using alarm, trending and comparative/historical means to reveal extensive details of facility energy consumption patterns. The data can be configured to monitor at very high levels, such as incoming services, or can be utilized down to individual motor or branch loads.

2. Heat Rate Analysis Benefits

EMIS systems provide benefit, in the first instance, to identify problems and areas of waste in energy consumption within a facility. In the second instance, as facility personnel utilize the data to optimize energy consumption through targeted maintenance, corrective action, equipment capital replacement cycles, etc. The longer term benefit of the system is to act as an accounting tool that allows controllers, financial officers, and operations personnel to trend energy consumption within the facility, or across facilities.

These benchmarks can allow for highly accurate cost characterizations and provide decision makers with the tools and information required to optimize energy purchase, equipment purchase, capital deployment and facility operations.