1. Loading

A wheel loader is used to transport wood chips, bark and sawdust from the storage area to what is referred to as the ‘moving floor’, where a scraper conveyor feeds the wood fuel to the furnace.

On average, 30 loads are fed each day and as much as 100 loads during the cold winter season.

2. Combustion

Thermal energy is produced using wood chips, through combustion of the biomass in the furnace. A special system controls combustion fully automatically, ensuring the highest level of combustion efficiency.

Thanks to a combined system integrating an electric filter and flue gas condensation unit, exhaust emissions are reduced to the very minimum.

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3. Generating electricity

The first ORC module in South Tyrol and one of Europe’s largest, producing 1500 kW of electrical power, was installed at the district heating plant.

Biomass is burned in the combustion boiler, resulting in thermal energy that is used to heat thermal oil. This drives turbines that in turn power a generator, converting the mechanical power into electrical energy. The exhaust heat is used to supply the two communities with district heating.

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4. District heating grid

The district heating grid consists of two insulated lines, the flow and the return. The flow transports the heating water to the individual district heating customers.

Each customer has a heat transfer station that transfers the heat to the existing central heating system through which it is distributed in the usual way throughout the home. A controller allows fully automatic adjustment of the temperature in each home.

900°C is the ideal temperature for
burning wood chips.