Project Profiles: Hospitality Entertainment

Kauai Marriott combined heat and powerAfter

Kauai Marriott Resort and Beach Club, Lihue, Kauai, Hawaii


Gas Technology Institute, Des Plaines, Ill.,
Propane Education & Research Council (PERC), Washington, D.C.,

Kauai Marriott combined heat and power

After Photo: PERC


The Gas Technology Institute and PERC field-tested two 405-kilowatt 3412LE generator sets, a heat-recovery system and a 244-ton absorption chiller at the resort to provide the propane and lodging industries with data about the in-service performance of propane-fueled engine technology for continuous use in commercial combined heat and power and distributed generation applications.

Generator manufacturer: Caterpillar,


The new building cooling, heating and power system is integrated with the resort’s existing diesel-fired boilers, which now provide steam for laundry use and supplemental domestic hot-water heating, and 450-ton electric chillers. To preserve the resort’s electric-rate structure, the system is sized to allow the resort to purchase electricity from the grid and use onsite generation only as a supplement to meet at least 50 percent of the resort’s daily electric load.

Caterpillar generator sets

After Photo: PERC

The generator sets efficiently combust propane fuel to generate electricity, which is fed into a facility system that can provide power to the entire campus. Heat exchangers capture waste heat produced by the generators and transfer it to the resort’s swimming pool, domestic hot-water system and absorption chiller. Any unrecovered waste heat is dumped to a 600-ton cooling tower. The hot water system uses the captured heat to heat water for domestic uses. The absorption chiller uses the captured heat to provide chilled water for a portion of the resort’s air conditioning. Switchgear and a utility transformer connect the system to the electrical grid. A web-accessible data-monitoring program measures the system’s overall mechanical and economic performance, collecting data at 15-minute intervals from approximately 50 instruments.

The system’s energy input includes propane fuel (to drive the generators), parasitic load (electricity consumed by engine radiators, water pumps and the cooling-tower fan), and building heat that is picked up by the chiller cooling water return and transferred to the absorber evaporator. The system’s energy output includes electricity produced by the generators, heat exhausted out the stacks, heat delivered to the hot-water system and the pool, and heat dumped to the cooling tower.

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