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Baza danych projektów PROW

IKI Air - Safer Steel Chimneys


IKI Air Chimney is an innovative project developing safer chimneys. Due to the air-flow system the chimney is more energy efficient and consequently environmentally friendlier and safer. The project won the Rural Innovation of the Year 2010 prize.


Already in the late 1980s the project promoter was involved in developing ventilation ducts and by the late 1990s the same techniques were applied to chimneys. The idea was to use a memory metal that returns to its original shape when the temperature decreases; however, after numerous trials the inventor found that this type of metal was not vital. Although the memory metal has not been used yet, the invention might benefit from it in future developments of chimneys.


The objective is to develop more fire-resistant and safer chimney alternatives and thereby to reduce not only the number of lives lost in fires, but also damages caused to properties in the events of fire.

Main activities

The project develops applied module-built and custom-made steel chimneys. The IKI Air-chimney is based on the idea of expanding metal when the temperature increases. When the chimney heats up it expands up-wards increasing the sulphur protector. Consequently the ventilation opens and cooling air can circulate. As the chimney cools down the sulphur protector descends and thereby closes the airflow.

Results & Benefits

By developing the IKI Air chimney, the fire-safety of other chimneys has also improved. Moreover, the invention has a positive effect on the rural environment as energy efficiency is improved in places where the chimney is used. In 2010 the project was selected as a best practice example for its innovation. The jury describe the project as being of this time and an innovation related to renewable energies that increases energy efficiency and environmentally friendly usage of wood energy.

Lessons learnt

When developing an innovative product like the IKI Air chimney, a certain degree of flexibility is required. Initially the main engineer planned to use a memory metal in the production, something that at this stage is not required. An improved chimney contributes also to environmental and social changes. In particular, social responsibility increases with a successful business in rural areas with limited job opportunities.

Project location and other information

The village of Voltti, near the town of Kauhava in Western Finland



RDP Territory


Total project cost (€)

135 000

Project website

Contact name

Reijo Hautala

Languages for contact

English, Finnish

At a glance



Final beneficiary type

Non-farm or non-forest entreprises

Budget range

€100 000 - €500 000

Start date:


End Date:


Theme / Measure:

• Rural Quality of Life & Economic Diversification
• Rural economic diversification
• 312. Support for business creation and development


Innovation, Clean technology, Competitiveness , Energy efficiency , Entrepreneurship

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