Case Study: Fire Protection in Wood Pellet Storage

FIRE-SCAN monitoring system in pellet production InfraTec

Wood pellets as an alternative and high-quality fuel have become increasingly important in recent years. Their local origin from sustainable cultivation in the region has given WUN Bioenergie GmbH the opportunity to respond to market demand as an environmentally friendly supplier of raw materials. However, like other fuels, stored wood pellets need to be secured and monitored around the clock to prevent causes of devastating damage in the event of a fire, for example. Robust and reliable thermography solutions are a suitable tool for plant protection here.

At its Wunsiedel site, WUN Bioenergie GmbH has more than one string to its bow. Among other things, it operates a biomass cogeneration plant there. Treetop wood with a high proportion of conifer needles and twig residues are used as heating fuel, as these are cheap and environmentally friendly to procure. The water content amounts to about 30 – 60 percent, which does not pose any problems for the operation of a highly efficient ORC (Organic Rankine Cycle) plant.

The production of regrown heating fuel
In addition to the CHP (combined heat and power) plant, there is a pellet production facility on site. Annually supplied with about 16,000 truckloads of wood chips and residues, it produces a total of 180,000 tons of pellets. This amount of pellets can be used to provide about 36,000 households with heat. One part of the produced pellets is packed on site and delivered to end customers. The other part is used to supply satellite power plants, which ensures local heating and electricity supply. When the pellets leave the production facility, they have a temperature of more than 100 °C and are transported to a 4,180 m² storage building for cooling, which is designed as an area storage facility to ensure better cooling and fast outgassing after the production is completed.

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