Pellets furnaces of the future - "Pelletvergaserkessel 2010"

During the utilisation of biomass as primary energy source in the small-scale presently the CO-, NOx- and particulate emissions are higher than e.g. for natural gas. The planned development will decrease the emissions from pellets furnaces significantly and will define a new state-of-the-art combustion.

Short Description




Since 1996, when pellet boilers have been offered for the first time in Austria, a steady increase of the number of annually installed boilers has been recognised. High operation comfort as well as availability have made pellets boilers the preferred technology for biomass based residential heating systems.

Though a tough competition on the residential heating market between biomass based and fossil fuel based systems prevails. To successfully compete with fossil fuel fired systems, the emissions of pellet boilers (gaseous emissions as well as particulate emissions) have to be further reduced. With commonly applied pellet boiler technologies a further reduction of the emission is only possible to a small extent since existing optimisation potentials have already been utilised. Therefore, the project proposed aims at the development of a new generation of pellet boilers, the so called Pelletvergaserkessel 2010 (pellet gasification boiler 2010). With this totally new technology a new state-of-the-art concerning the thermal utilisation of wood pellets shall be introduced which distinguishes itself by significantly reduced emissions (CO<20 mg/Nm³, TOC<1 mg/Nm³, NOx<70 mg/Nm³, dust < 5 mg/Nm³) as well as a broad range of woody biomass pellets which can be used as fuels (softwood, hardwood, wood with bark, short rotation wood).

Development Procedure

Due to the competent consortium (a well experienced boiler manufacturer applies together with two highly experienced scientific partners in the field of thermo-chemical biomass conversion) as well as the extensive application of simulation methods (CFD) representing the present state-of-research, it shall be possible to achieve the overall aim of the project, which is the development of a prototype of the Pelletvergaserkessel 2010 within the next 4 years. With this new product, which will define new standards regarding low emissions and high fuel flexibility in the field of small-scale pellet boilers, the leadership on the European market shall be reached within the following years.

Results of the first 12 Month of 42 Month

The first months of the project have brought up the necessary information about the technologies used in the market. Now in the next research year, the set up of a simulation is planned. The CFD simulation shall optimise the model of the Pelletvergaserkessels and will also do the dimensioning and optimisation of the combustion.

The investigation of the heat recovery technologies and fine dust separation technologies has shown that the systems available in the market can satisfy the requirements only insufficiently. However, after the theoretical consideration of all systems and calculation of relevant scenarios we have won a good overview, how to achieve an optimum success by a combination of the systems. The feasibility of a system should be proven next year by an experiment set-up of a system to the heat recovery and flue gas condensation as well as by a new development of an electric filter within the scope of a dissertation together with the University of Technology Graz, Institute of Electrical Engineering, as a possible partner.

Because we are still in a very early project phase, conclusions do not make sense. The ongoing research in 2007 is still absolutely necessary for the confirmation of the usable principles. Because of the only theoretical knowledge at this time, there are still too many imponderabilities existing.

Project Partners


Jürgen Brandt
Windhager Zentralheizung Technik GmbH

Project partners

  • TU-Graz, Institut f. Ressourcenschonende und Nachhaltige Systeme

Contact Address

Windhager Zentralheizung Technik GmbH
Jürgen Brandt
Anton Windhager Strasse 20, 5201 Seekirchen
Tel.: +43 (6212) 2341 0
Fax: +43 (6212) 4228