Automated Wood Briquette Feed System for a GARN® Wood Fired Hydronic Furnace

Baker, Jared
Baumann, Jeffrey
Leriger, Michael
Morrison, Andrew
Schulte, Brandon
GARN® Wood Fired Hydronic Furnaces are currently used at the Ucross Foundation near Ucross, Wyoming. These GARN® units burn wood to heat a water reservoir, which through a heat exchanger, heats a water-glycol mixture then used to heat the Ucross Foundation buildings. Currently the GARN® heaters must be manually loaded with split wood as often as every 90 minutes to maintain a water temperature above 120˚F; otherwise a backup propane heating system starts. Our senior design project involved designing an automated wood fuel feed system for the GARN® furnaces which will drastically reduce the number of labor hours currently needed to stoke the stove. This project includes a storage container for wood briquettes of various sizes which will automatically be transported and launched into the GARN® combustion chamber through an automated door. Our automated feed system will run unattended for the desired run time of 96 hours while maintaining the water reservoir temperature above 120˚F to minimize or eliminate the use of the backup propane heating system.
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University of Wyoming Libraries