Project meeting of STEP at the site of the company ATS - Agro Trading & Solutions in Hardegsen (Photo: DBFZ)

Heat Validation market potential Biomass gasification Biomass furnace System integration

Project ID 03KB162

VEMS - Intelligent Combustion and Energy Management System for an Energy-Efficient and Clean Provision of Heat through Biomass Boilers (VEMS)

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  • 01.01.2020 - 31.12.2022


Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics (IBP)
Nobelstraße 12
70569 Stuttgart

Dr.-Ing. Mohammad Aleysa – Project Leader
Telephone : +49 (0)711 970-3455


03KB162B - Sabo Elektronik GmbH

Associated partners

Cooperation partners



Planned Results:

  • Plant level: pilot plant, pilot plant, retrofitting existing plant
  • Concept level: Plant concept
  • Data level: models/modelling, database, measurement series/program, software
  • Market level: Patent, license, market-ready components 
  • Other: strategy, evaluation, contribution to guidelines, norms or standards
  • Further: System for efficient heat supply including use


The achievement of a high efficiency in heating system results from efficient, needs- based production and consumption of the heat. The more complex and slower the heat supply and the combustion process in the boiler it is, the higher the need for an intelligent combustion and energy management system will be. This can ensure both ecological and economic energy production as well as an efficient use of energy. While gas and oil boilers start within seconds without increased emissions and reach their rated heat output within a few minutes, biomass boilers take up to an hour to start the combustion process and then to provide the usable heat, depends on their type and output. This is due to the enormous mass of the biomass charged boiler (up to one ton of material mass of a boiler with a thermal output of 50 kW). For this reason, the operation of biomass boilers in combination with heat buffer storage tank is required and recommended in many cases. Heat buffer storage tanks should help to ensure that the biomass boilers only operate at nominal load if possible, at which generally low emissions and high efficiency can be achieved. The operation of the biomass boilers in combination with buffer storage tank can lead to proper combustion, but this option does not necessarily result in the efficient use of the heat produced and stored. According to the state of the art, heat losses particularly occur during the unfavourable operating phases and the standby-mode of the boiler as well as the buffer storage tank.


In the context of this research project, a new control technology for biomass boilers (VEMS - Intelligent combustion and energy management 
system for an energy-efficient and clean provision of heat from Biomass Boilers) is to be developed and tested. In contrast to the conventional controllers, the regulation of the energy supply in VEMS technology does not depend on the temperature in the buffer storage. It is based on the actual energy consumption in the building, which is covered by the thermal output of the modulated biomass boiler. It is determined according to the energy calculations of the standard norms of DIN V 18599, DIN V 4108-6 and DIN V 4701-1. The use of the VEMS technology for the regulation of energy supply should be so developed that enhancing the efficiency in the whole building can be achieved regardless of the type and properties of the building. In addition to the energy provided by other renewable energies (e.g. solar thermal, geothermal, etc.), providing the thermal power in the building should be achieved through the combustion of the exact fuel mass actually required to cover the energy requirement.


Fraunhofer-Institut für Bauphysik IBP

  • Comprehensive research for the use of controllers in biomass boilers in residential buildings,
  • Development of a system for the efficient and combined heat supply in residential buildings based on different heat supply technologies,
  • Construction of a technical test facility and validation of the entire system in continuous operation.

Sabo Elektronik GmbH

  • Development of technical scenarios for the implementation of energy management systems,
  • Development of a technical structure for the use of controllers for efficient heat supply in residential buildings,
  • Simulations and endurance testing with the developed software.


Fraunhofer-Institut für Bauphysik IBP

  • Development of procedures for the efficient provision of heat when operating biomass boilers,
  • Linking in integration between heat storage and heat supply technologies,
  • Support in practical experiments.

Sabo Elektronik GmbH

  • Development of an intelligent hardware and software structure
  • Execution of process simulation


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