The economic analysis of geothermal / absorption cooling of a hospital: Case study of Dokuz Eylül University Research and Application Hospital
Dokuz Eylül Research and Application Hospital, founded in 1982, is located in İnciraltı Place, in Balçova. It is placed at the south of İzmir and between the İzmir-Çeşme Highway and İzmir-Çeşme Super Highway. Rather rich geothermal resources found in Balçova, provides the use of geothermal water for heating in the hospital. However, the required cooling capacity for the hospital, which is relatively massive when compared with the residents, has been supplied by conventional compression chillers. In this study, the aim is to decrease the overall annual costs incurred by cooling of the hospital by implementing an absorption cooling system, which uses geothermal fluid as the heating source. The main idea behind this implementation is that the electricity consumption of an absorption chiller is minimal when compared with a compression chiller. On the other hand, since the source that is going to be used in the system is geothermal energy, there will be an additional cost incurred by the use of geothermal fluid. So, the economic analysis that is going to be conducted involves the comparison of two alternatives, which are leaving the system as is now and implementing an absorption cooling system. To minimize the costs incurred by the implementation of an absorption cooling system, instead of supplying the full capacity of the hospital, a moderate capacity will be supplied by the absorption chillers, by using the existing compression chillers as the peaking units. Since it is not known which capacity will be suitable for the needs, several absorption cooling machines with various capacities will be examined. After comparing these mutually exclusive alternatives, the effect of the change in geothermal fluid price on the implementation of an absorption cooling system, and the break-even geothermal water price will be found. At the end, the investment worth values of the selected absorption cooling machines will be examined to decide whether to implement an absorption cooling system in the hospital or not.