Cooling systems have been widely studied over the past few years, but there are little researches on cascade cooling system containing different cooling methods. Cascade cooling system is suitable for the hot stream cooling process with large temperature variation. A new cascade cooling system containing waste heat recovery, air cooling, water cooling, absorption refrigeration and compression refrigeration is proposed. In this system, hot water is used to recycle waste heat from the hot stream, then drive the absorption refrigeration cycle (ARC), providing refrigerant water for hot stream cooling process. The mass flowrate of hot water determines the amount of waste heat recovered, and the final hot water temperature affects the thermal efficiency of ARC. Both the flowrate and the final temperature of hot water influence the cooling capacity generated by ARC, and further affect the heat load distribution of cascade cooling system. The hot water mass flowrate is a critical decision variable for the optimal design of the system. This study develops a model for the techno-economic optimization of cascade cooling system with ARC. ARC is modelled using thermodynamics with the concept of state points. The proposed model determines the optimal heat load distribution of cascade cooling system and the optimal design of ARC, with the minimum total annual cost (TAC) simultaneously. The effectiveness of this method is demonstrated with a case study in a polysilicon enterprise.