The Project

Presently about 0.7 Mio small-scale biomass boilers are sold in Europe per year and until 2020 an increase to 1.6 Mio is expected whereas wood chip boilers are one main technology. With these wood chip boilers the fuel feeding systems applied are still a considerable weak point. They are responsible for 80 to 90% of unexpected plant shutdowns, increased emissions and reduced efficiencies. Moreover, at presently applied feeding concepts discharge from the bottom prevails which implies the disadvantages of massive constructions needed, increased wear of the equipment, complicated maintenance and high operation costs.

The objective of BioChipFeeding is to develop a new wood chip feeding system of the future for small-scale heating plants. A core component of the system is a gripper which enables feeding from above the pile of stored fuel. It will be equipped with sensors to screen the fuel quality regarding particle size and moisture content and thereby have the ability to create a rather constant fuel quality by producing appropriate fuel blends. Moreover, a new fuel feeding screw will be developed which allows for a constant transport of the wood chips into the furnace independently of shape and size.

With this new technology the boiler performance shall be significantly improved due to a more even fuel supply with a constant quality. Reduced operation and maintenance costs should make it very attractive for users and therefore it will have a huge potential for application. The project demands for a multidisciplinary approach and highly experienced R&D performers which is reflected by the consortium. The SMEPs would not be able to develop such a system by themselves but they have the possibility to efficiently utilise the project results by implementing them in their portfolios and thereby strengthen their market position. With the help of the project the SMEPs should become technology leaders regarding wood chip feeding for small-scale boilers in Europe.

Main Objectives

  • Improvement of the performance of the boiler
  • Reduction of the operation and maintenance costs
  • Reduction of emissions