Performance of an automatically controlled wood stove: Thermal efficiency and carbon monoxide emissions

Jytte Boll Illerup, Brian Brun Hansen*, Weigang Lin, Joachim Nickelsen, Vagn Hvam Pedersen, Bente Eskerod, Kim Dam-Johansen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


The development and performance in practice of a commercial automatically controlled wood stove is described. The digital control system controls the three combustion air inlets individually, based on the combustion phase, measured flue gas temperature, measured O2 outlet concentration and desired room temperature. The control system ensured a well-controlled combustion cycle with respect to temperature and oxygen concentration, yielding improved thermal efficiency and minimized carbon monoxide emissions. A minimum in CO emissions was identified for the oxygen operation range 10–13% O2. The improved performance has been verified by field tests in 5 private homes, demonstrating more stable and optimal O2 concentrations and temperatures compared to manual operation. This resulted in significant lower CO concentrations (up to 27%) alongside higher thermal efficiency (up to 20%) when comparing manually and automatically controlled wood stoves. This new technology has a great potential for improving the stove efficiency/biomass utilisation and reducing the emissions of pollutants at low altitude close to private homes.
Original languageEnglish
JournalRenewable Energy
Pages (from-to)640-647
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Wood stove
  • Emission reduction
  • Automatic control
  • Thermal efficiency
  • Carbon monoxide
  • Practical operation

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