Honda Cogeneration Systems?

Our local gas utility here in Red Sox Nation has been running radio ads aimed at homeowners promoting the Honda household-cogeneration equipment, which includes mention of selling extra generated electricity back to the utility, and gummint credits to help you purchase your equipment.
http://world.honda.com/news/2007/c070717Compact-Household-Cogeneration-Unit /
Anyone here have any experience with them?
Jeff
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Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat \'57 EE)
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UNLESS there is one of those silly laws in place that requires the utlity to buy back power at "retail" rates there is no way this can make sense.
The homeowner would be buying fuel at "retail" unless (again) there is some kind of special deal with the gas company.
But the real killer is the "wear and tear" on the relatively small sized home power plant. Even with "Honda Quality" after about 6,000 hours the engine would have to be replaced/rebuilt.

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No experiance, but would you save money with it?
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Interesting concept. For electric generation, it's small, only 1KW, but I guess it's sized that way because any larger and the corresponding waste heat would be more than needed for a typical home. What does the marketing say about the cost to buy and operate, life expectancy, how much you make selling electricity back to the utility, etc?
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On 5/28/2008 9:59 AM Jeff Wisnia spake thus:

No, sorry. Just a general comment: I was a little surprised to read the description, since to me, cogeneration has always meant taking the previously wasted energy from one process and recovering it. (The classic example is using excess steam or other heat from an industrial plant to generate electricity.)
Not that this isn't an interesting application, but it is really just a way of capturing thermal energy from an IC engine that would otherwise be lost, and using it to heat water.
To me, a *real* cogeneration unit would be one that would capture heat from gas appliances, say, and use it to generate electricity. Probably not practical on a single-home scale, but maybe on a multiple-unit level.
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That exactly what it is, how it's been used in commercial electric co- generation applications and how it's used in this application.

That exactly what it is and how it's used in this application.

Capture what heat from what gas appliance? Gas appliances like water heaters, furnaces, etc turn gas into heat, so in any effort to optimize them it makes more sense to just recover more of the heat as heat, not try to turn it into electricity.

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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Apologies if I have mentioned this here before, but at my first injuneering job out of college in '58 I saw some running test models of a refrigerator with an insulated DHW tank on top of it. The fridge was gas powered like a Servel and the heat removed from the "icebox" was dumped into the DHW tank. The name the company I was working for had given those units was "Stator".
I don't think they ever made it to market, at least not in the USA. Reasons I can think of were that they were about 8-1/2 feet tall and ceiling heights in homes were coming down fast. Plus, energy cost so little (relatively) back then that there wasn't that much incentive to save it.
Didn't some of the olde kitchen stoves have a DHW tank associated with them?
Jeff
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