Welcome to the Oel-Waerme-Institut

OWI provides research services investigating and developing concepts and new technologies for heat and power generation on a basis of fossil and renewable fuels. It aims at developing energy-efficient and environmentally friendly products which are marketable. At the same time, OWI cooperates closely with industrial partners and research institutes and sees itself as an mediator between fundamental and applied research. OWI is a non-profit organisation and an acknowledged institute affiliated to RWTH Aachen University.


Vegetable oil as a fuel in the agriculture –
Retrofitting of tractors for multi fuel application

11th October 2017 – In the agriculture the widening of the application of vegetable oil as a fuel in tractors could contribute to more sustainability and climate protection in the framework of a resource-friendly bio-economy. However, the compatibility of fuel-leading components with vegetable oil fuel must be checked, so that the operational safety and lifetime duration of tractors and other agricultural machinery can be guaranteed. In order to utilise vegetable oil from rape as a part of a Multi-Fuel application strategy, a research project investigates in particular the interaction between fuels and diesel injectors. … More

OWI – Successful with a new structure and future fuels

28th August 2017 – The OWI Oel Waerme Institute latest review on its new adjustment was very positive. With incoming orders of more than two million euros in 2017 for public funded research projects for the development and use of liquid energy sources the non-profit research institute sees itself very well positioned. For 2018 incoming orders in similar order are expected. „The new adjustment bears the fruit we expected “, says OWI managing director David Diarra. „The current discussion about climate and environmentally friendly mobility leads to a demand for OWI´s competences in the area of sustainable liquid fuels“, explains Diarra. … More

Biooils from waste materials –
Innovative liquid fuels for the domestic heating market?

31st May 2017 – Within the turnaround of energy policy liquid regenerative energy sources would have to be put on a broader raw material base, to make increasing contribution to climate protection. Up to now the use of waste materials (used cooking oil, pyrolysis oil, tall oil, etc.) for the production of synthetic fuels by means of hydrogenation is an option that is little studied. The hydrogenation of vegetable oils is an increasingly significant process for the production of high-quality fuel components and fuel components from renewable raw materials. Their properties are very similar to those of diesel and fuel oil. The aim of research and development activities is to produce a fuel (hydrogenated bio oil, HBO) at the technical level of fuel oil which then could be added to the fuel oil and be used as a supplement in the domestic heating market.  … More

Optimizing a biogas gas engine for thermal power stations –
Power yield is to rise

11th May 2017 – Combined heat and power (CHP) plants convert regenerative generated biogas into power and heat, which can be fed into power or district heating grids. Due to technical reasons the production of heat is higher than power. A new research project aims to increase the share of generated power at the expense of heat. Thus electric efficiency of CHP units with biogas engines rises. The concept intends to integrate a reforming unit into the CHP plant. … More

Electric mobility –
Further development of fuels for operation in Plugin Hybrid Electric Vehicles

13th April 2017 – Electric cars are the cars of the future. The share of vehicles which have an internal combustion engine, an electric motor and an external charging possibility for a battery (Plugin Hybrid Electric Vehicles, PHEV) increases. This affects the user’s fueling intervals due to the hybrid propulsion, which lowers the actual fuel consumption and leads to longer storage of the fuel in the tank compared to conventional engines. This results in a forced fuel degradation. By increasing levels of synthetic fuels and biofuels in the fuel the composition can vary even within existing norms. Hence, new questions arise regarding the fuel’s operability due to longer residence times in the fuel supply system which can be more than 6 months. … More

Successful commissioning –
Fuel cell system for ships produces electricity

2nd February 2017 – In the research project „Ship integrated fuel cell“ (SchIBZ) the developed power system on the basis of diesel fuel and SOFC fuel cells has started electricity production at the end of 2016. After the successful commissioning the system reached a power output of almost 30 kW with a maximum gross efficiency of 56 %. In comparison to the classical diesel generators which reach efficiencies up to 40 % the fuel cell power system is not only energy-efficient, but also clearly quieter and less pollutant. The reduction of harmful emissions is necessary in harbour areas as well as on coastal and river passages due to the increasing national and international legislations. … More