In 2011, Engelsberg, a part of the market Lauterhofen, invested  in a wood gasifier from Spanner Re². After more than six years of operation, the Spanner Re² Biomass CHP “HKA 30“ has provided the bioenergy village a satisfactory income from: producing more than 1.5 million kW of electricity and 3.6 million kW of heat  – all from reginally  sourced wood chips.

German Bioenergy Village Engelsberg is energy self-sufficient

There has been a woodchip heating plant in Engelsberg since 2006. The whole community have shown a great commitment to regenerative energy generation. With approximately 5,000 voluntary working hours, they built a 1,500-metre-long local heating network that connects to 27 of the 30 houses in the Engelsberg district. "Our wish was to generate not only heat but also electricity from wood," explained Mayor Ludwig Lang and Willi Locker Baumamt, Director of the market town of Lauterhofen. In 2011 Engelsberg went one step further and installed a woodgasifier from the LowerBavarian plant manufacturer Spanner Re2 GmbH. At the beginning of the project, Michael Gottschalk, then mayor of Lauterhofen, said that the woodgasifier fits exactly with us in terms of its output of around 30 kW electrical and 70 kW heat. The woodgasifier is designed to cover the basic heat requirements of households and, together with the 320 kW woodchip heating system, continuously supplies the local heating network with heat generated from renewable sources. The old reserve oil heating system has not been used since the implementation of the combination of woodgasifier and woodchip boiler.

Electricity from wood gasifier is fed into public power grid

The annual consumption of electricity in Engelsberg is around 100,000 kWh. With Re²'s efficient wood-fired power plant, which supplies both electricity and heat, more than twice as much electrical energy is generated annually and fed into the public power grid to generate income for the village.


Wood gasification technology

In the wood-fired power plant, energy is generated from woodchips according to the principle of combined heat and power generation. The woodchips with a water content of around ten percent are transported from the woodchip bunker to the wood power plant via a screw conveyor. An integrated metal separator removes possible metallic impurities to protect the woodgasifier before the fuel reaches the heart of the plant, called the reformer, via another feed unit. The actual woodgasfication takes place in the reformer. At temperatures of around 1,200oC, a thermochemical process produces clean wood gas. This is cooled via heat exchangers, which generates around 10 kW of thermal energy. The cooled wood gas then passes through two filter systems before it is fed to a powerful combustion engine in the downstream combined heat and power unit (CHP). A generator produces electricityfrom the woodgas-air mixture. Heat is also generated during the process. The waste heat in the boiler room is also used in Engelsberg. The woodchips are dried to the corresponding water content in the bunker from below via perforated plates. With operating times of 8,200 hours per year, around 1,200 m³ of woodchips are required, which come exclusively from the Engelsberg catchment area.

 Wood gasification pays off

The heat price for customers in Engelsberg is 6.3 ct/kWh - a price that is more than competitive with fossil-generated energy. In addition, the bioenergy village achieves an annual 5-digit euro amount by feeding the electricity into the public power grid through remuneration in accordance with the Renewable Energy Sources Act. Engelsberg leads by example that sustainable energy production is both ecologically and economically attractive. In addition, the value added in comparison to fossil-generated energy remains with the Engelsberg concept in the region.

Visit the Engelsbergers facilities to see the plant in action

Every first Friday of the month, starting at 17:00, the Engelsbergers offer the opportunity to learn about the journey towards an  independent energy supply. The woodgasifier can also be visited. For further information, please contact Willi Locker at Bauhof Lauterhofen or


German community in Bavaria uses a wood gasifier to generate electricity and heat to supply households.