Episode 2: A highly efficient new filter stops the particulate matter that popular wood-fired heating systems produce.
About every fifth household in Germany heats with wood – in many places with wood-burning stoves, or pellet or woodchip heating systems. Wood, as a renewable resource, can replace fossil fuels and contribute to climate protection. The downside: so far, as much as 25,000 tons of harmful particulate matter has been produced each year across Germany by wood-fired heating.
But that could all change soon. At the RWTH Aachen University’s Unit of Technology of Fuels (TEER), Professor Peter Quicker and his team have developed an efficient filter against these emissions. Based on glass wool, it can filter up to 99% of the tiny dust particles out of the flue gas. The filter is installed in an easy-maintenance chimney pot. In the coming months, up to ten of these systems will be tested in North Rhine-Westphalia to compare the good lab results with real-world data. The primary goal of this field test under real operating conditions is to find out how long the system works before the filter material needs to be replaced.
And where was this superfine particulate matter filter invented? At the RWTH Aachen University, of course.