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Digital fire

Be it split logs or pellets, heating using renewable materials is being optimized by the minute. Pellet stoves are now digitally controlled and can be integrated into your heating system.
by Thomas Wagner | 3/22/2017

Even if the first blossoms are now to be seen on the trees, Hall 9 at the ISH seems to be dedicated to preparing for next winter. The hall is already well heated, there’s wood everywhere, and there are little flames licking away at it. Anyone who thinks that this is all about that great sound of a crackling open hearth is mistaken. The focus has long since been on primary stoves that provide a sustainable, CO2-neutral and efficient “smart home fire”

Heating stoves and fireplaces, fueled by split logs or gas, today achieve CO2-neutral combustion and boast filters that comply with the current exhaust gas and fine-particle emission regulations. Added to which, all the renowned makers now market models that can heat several rooms at once or together with a heat exchanger support your existing heating system. For example, Kleining even offers combined units that can use wood and pellets.

In design terms, the heating stoves and fireplaces haven’t changed much. Be it traditional or modern, barrel or box shaped, with or without a memory module, be with metal, concrete, natural stone or ceramic cladding, one thing is certain: there’s a great selection of different models.

Moreover, the digital age has most certainly begun in the field of pellet stoves. Wodtke places the focus is on “ignis sapiens”, intelligent fire, and proudly presents “Karl”, a world first: the prototype for a digital heating assistant; it is scheduled for market launch in 2019. “Karl” enables voice-base control of a Wodtke pellet stove. If you say to it: “Karl, I’m cold” or “Karl, it’s too hot”, then Karl adjusts the ambient temperature accordingly. Wodtke’s new “ixbase” series already combines efficient heating technology with an innovative control system and user comfort, and the functions can be intuitively set using the Touch panel of the Wodtke “FireTouch” app – either at home via WLAN or by Internet when on the road.

Haas+Sohn, MCZ and various other manufacturers now offer digitally-controlled pellet stoves. MCZ also makes available pellet stoves such as “Doc” and “Linea” that are only 30 centimeters deep and thus ideal for corridors or small rooms – you can channel the warm air into other rooms, too.

What only a few people realize is that since April 1, 2015, or so the powers-that-be decided, the subsidies for biomass plants were significantly boosted under the market incentivization program. Thus, pellet stoves with a water pocket are eligible for a minimum grant of 2,000 Euros when installed in existing buildings, and the figure is actually 3,000 Euros for pellet boilers. For the details on the respective subsidy programs in Germany, simply go on the Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (Bafa) Website.

Where in the past things simply got burnt: At Wodtke the talk is all about “ignis sapiens”, intelligent fire.
Speak to your stove: Wodtke presents a world first: the prototype for a digital heating assistant that answers to the name “Karl”.
Even the CO2 savings get displayed: Pellet stoves such as the Wodtke “ixBase” can be controlled by app.
As narrow as a radiator: MCZ’s “Doc” model shows that pellet stoves needn’t take up a lot of space.
The very special Easter egg: “T-Eye” by the Swiss Tiba company.
Control it by Smartphone locally or globally: Haas+Sohn offer pellet stoves with their very own WLAN module.
Cozy warmth: Wodtke’s “ixBase” pellet stove in the version clad in soapstone.