Replacement Drive Quickly Found Thanks to Online Support

The Heating Can Stay on in Scheyern Abbey

It's not the sort of story you hear every day. In the abbey in Scheyern, Germany, a technically minded monk recognized that one of the old motors in the abbey's own district heating network needed to be replaced. So he went looking for a replacement. Where? He was thrilled to quickly find just what he needed in our Online Support.

The project at a glance

Scheyern Abbey

Historic building of Scheyern Abbey

Town/city: Scheyern in Upper Bavaria (Germany)

Industry: Working Benedictine abbey

Application: Heating system of the internal district heating network

Quick replacement for an aging motor

Wooden building with solar collectors on the roof and external facilities for flue gas treatment and dust removal
In the boiler house, the wood chip heating system needed a new drive
In the boiler house, the wood chip heating system needed a new drive
  • The in-house district heating network must not fail
  • Environmentally friendly energy generation for the scattered building complexes of the abbey
  • More efficient operation of the heating system
  • Replacement motor needed on short notice
  • Information must be quickly and easily accessible
  • Reliable supplier sought

Online Support to help find a new drive

Gray gearmotor for closed conveyor belt in a wooden building
New parallel-shaft helical gearmotor for the scraper chain conveyor of the wood chip heating system
New parallel-shaft helical gearmotor for the scraper chain conveyor of the wood chip heating system
  • Comprehensive Online Support with many useful online tools
  • Easy to make inquiry regarding selected product online
  • All required information is quickly and easily accessible without registering
  • More efficient IE3 AC motor from the DRN.. series combined with a compact parallel-shaft helical gear unit of type FA77

The abbey stays warm

Uwe Zurth (Customer Integration manager) with Friar Vitalis (right)
Uwe Zurth (Customer Integration manager) with Friar Vitalis (right)
Uwe Zurth (Customer Integration manager) with Friar Vitalis (right)
  • Simple selection and ordering of the new drive
  • Comprehensive, easily accessible technical information and documentation
  • Quick replacement of the old motor with the new gearmotor
  • No system downtime; no interruption of business
  • Reduced energy costs thanks to more efficient IE3 drive
  • Durable, future-proof solution

Quote: Friar Vitalis, technical representative of Scheyern Abbey

The customer portal of SEW‑EURODRIVE provided clear, concise and well organized information on what I needed. Then I inquired online. There's plenty of information available there.


The project in detail

"We cannot allow the system to go down"

Historic building of Scheyern Abbey
Historic building of Scheyern Abbey
Historic building of Scheyern Abbey

It's not unknown that many abbeys and monasteries are not just places of prayer and meditation but also home to enterprises and estates. Located about 50 kilometers north of Munich in the scenic region of Upper Bavaria, Scheyern Abbey is no exception. This time-honored Benedictine abbey consists of widely scattered complexes of buildings.

The estate includes 440 hectares of forest, which extend one and a half kilometers from the abbey all around. For three decades, the monks worked to turn what was once a monoculture of spruce into a near-natural mixed forest, which was acknowledged in 2005 with the Bavarian State Prize for Exemplary Forest Cultivation.

The abbey's twelve monks and many employees also manage an agricultural business as well as fish ponds for raising carp, trout, sturgeon, pike, and zander. Furthermore, the abbey has its own butcher shop, brewery, distillery, and restaurant in which visitors can enjoy all of these products.

And finally, the abbey grounds also house a farm, a school consisting of an upper vocational school and a technical college, residential accommodations, and hotel and conference rooms.

To keep an operation of this scale running requires a correspondingly large heating system. To this end, rather than rely on individual heating, the Benedictine monks have created their own district heating system that supplies all of these widely scattered buildings with pipelined hot steam.

The abbey cannot afford to let this critical central heating system go down. Without it, this unique enterprise would come grinding to a halt. Quite a challenge for the drive technology used.

The annual summer inspection of the heating system is where it all started...

Boiler house of the district heating system
Boiler house of the district heating system

Every summer, Friar Vitalis checks the technical systems of Scheyern Abbey. This time, while inspecting the wood chip heating system, he found a problem that needed to be solved as quickly as possible. The drive, which was getting on in years, showed clear signs of wear. The trained motor mechanic and CNC milling machine operator soon decided that it needed to be replaced.

What to do? Where shall I look? How quickly can I get a replacement? That weekend, the Benedictine monk began researching – without a clue how quickly he would find what he was looking for.

Via the website to Online Support – and the new replacement drive

Product configurator in Online Support
Product configurator in Online Support

The important thing was speed, because if the motor had failed, the abbey's district heating network would have gone down. And without heating, the daily business of the abbey, with its multiple complexes of buildings scattered across spacious grounds, would have been brought to a standstill. So Friar Vitalis hoped to stumble across something to help on the internet and began the search.

Opening the website of SEW‑EURODRIVE, he immediately noticed the Online Support and logged in as a new customer. With his technical experience, the cleric felt right at home using the simple and quickly available tools and information there.

With the "clear, concise and well organized" product configurator, he soon found the new drive he needed. And all the necessary documentation and data were provided there as well. As a "technician who is interested in his job and wants to do it properly," he was thrilled by the comprehensive tools of Online Support.

The inquiry was quickly placed, and the new drive was delivered and installed in no time.

Efficiency class IE3 for significantly greater efficiency

Scraper chain conveyor system with new drive installed above
Scraper chain conveyor system with new drive installed above

The requirements demanded of the drive in the heating facility are high. It is in continuous duty to make sure that the boiler is always provided with sufficient fuel.

To that end, the wood chips, which are stored next to the boiler house in dry, well-ventilated piles up to eight meters (26 feet) high, must be conveyed a few meters upward to where the boiler is located. This is accomplished by a central scraper chain conveyor system. It supplies the heating system with 6000 loose cubic meters, or 1200 tons, of wood chips annually.

The new drive is just as efficient as the heating system is sustainable. Friar Vitalis decided in favor of a sturdy gearmotor with efficiency class IE3, which gets the job of moving the wood chips done using considerably less energy. With its compact parallel-shaft helical gear unit, the new drive fits perfectly into the cramped quarters under the roof of the boiler house.

Rugged gearmotors for the rough work

Agitator gear unit for the mash tub in the brewery
Agitator gear unit for the mash tub in the brewery

The new scraper chain conveyor drive is not the only product from SEW‑EURODRIVE faithfully doing its job in the abbey.

In the mash tub of the abbey brewery, the mash of barley malt, hops and water must remain in constant motion. An untiring gearmotor there keeps the agitator running day in, day out. Here, too, the central heat supply from the heating plant brings the water in the tub to a boil.

The flue gas cleaning plant of the heater houses two more of our gearmotors. They drive the hammer mills in the electrostatic precipitator of the chimney, helping to make the heating system as environmentally friendly as possible.

In a wood chip heating system, dust formation is unavoidable. To prevent it from getting into the air, the motors shake the electrodes of the precipitator at regular intervals. With their help, dust particles that have accumulated on the electrodes due to their electrostatic charge are knocked loose to fall safely into a closed collection bin.


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