Detection and early warning of chimney fires

ICR3ATE has contributed to a special innovation project of Univé. With this project, Univé wants to investigate what practical and technical impossibilities there are to reduce or even eliminate the risk of chimney-stone fire.

In 2018, Univé participated in a Business Challenge organized by the Chamber of Commerce (KvK). The Chamber of Commerce organizes these challenges to make it easier for large companies and corporations to get in touch with SMEs and Startups. ICR3ATE, along with dozens of other small businesses, was also one of the participants. During this Business Challenge, Univé chose to involve us together with Fluctus Industrial Design & Engineering and Studio Mango in their ambition for ‘No Fire in Your Chimney’.
This resulted in the project initiative NOFIYC, initiated by the Univé Innovation Team.
With this innovation project, Univé wants to find out which practical and technical
(im)possibilities exist to reduce the risk of chimney fire or even to remove it
take. With the help of Arvid Hendriks from QManagement, we are a collaboration for
entered into this project. A collaboration with three smaller parties and a collaboration
with Univé.


Three lines were followed in the first exploratory phase of this project:

  1. What do the experts say about the ambition to measure in/around the chimney what the critical factors are that cause a chimney fire?
  2. To what extent are there past experiences and patents that are blocking the development of a possible technical solution?
  3. How can we measure things like chimney temperature and heater exhaust temperature, heating behaviour and to what extent can we warn of chimney fire and perhaps even predict?

    ICR3ATE mainly supported this project with a contribution for the latter third line.

Required techniques

Specifically, the following components were assessed in this first exploratory phase:

  • measuring high temperatures at stove outlet in a non-invasive way (with contact or by e.g. infrared)
  • measuring high temperatures at chimney outlet in a non-invasive way (and which can withstand a fire)
  • use sensor technology that is installed in the chimney
  • investigate whether and to what extent IoT data transfer is possible from a metal chimney channel
  • find out what variety of heater outlets are needed that require more types of temperature sensors than one standard type

Future possibilities

Although the project is still ongoing at the time of this article, a certain image is already emerging:

  • the variation in heaters is very large; that complicates one universal solution
  • the amount of parameters that determine the risk of chimney fire is quite high; that makes a predictive character very challenging
  • human firing behavior with choice of fuel (type, dry / wet) and moment of firing (whether / not in fog), the form of firing (high temperature firing for creosote combustion) is a very determining factor
  • and it is precisely these elements that are not all equally easy to measure.


More information?

There is no project website. With this project we are included in a TV broadcast of EenVandaag.

Contact us for more information about this issue and our role

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