Thursday, February 19, 2009

BIOMASS COOKING STOVES

The stove seen in the picture is made from a tin can;a 4"x4" window is made on the side near the bottom to place the firewood and a grate on the top to hold the pot all for Rs.6 !cooking is done in the open to avoid smoke in the hut.
For the poor in urban areas and most people living in rural areas, there's little alternative to burning wood and other biomass for cooking food,particularly for theBPL[Below the poverty level]families;biomass is readily available; kerosene and LPG are expensive and not available easily in rural areas; require an investment poor cannot afford;they involve a long transport for delivery to the over 600,000 villages in India;they are non-renewable and likely to exhaust one day;in contrast properly planned, wood can be grown where it is needed,near the villages and being renewable it is inexhaustible;our long term security lies in developing our wood resources.it can also be carbon neutral when compensatory planting is done
However biomass burning creates indoor air pollution which kills one person every twenty seconds[WHO];India accounts for 80% of the 600,000 premature deaths that occur in south-east Asia annually due to exposure to IAP.The World Health Organisation estimates that pollution levels in rural Indian kitchens are 30 times higher than recommended levels and six times higher than air pollution levels found in New Delhi. secondly the traditional open stoves are very inefficient and consume high quantity of wood or other biomass.
Tremendous amount of research has gone into making of improved stoves with superior cooking efficiency and no or less smoke; almost all these innovations follow the basic design of the ROCKET STOVE invented by Dr.Winiarski of Aprovecho.The salient features of the design are-
1.complete burning of the wood is achieved by providing for adequate air supply into the combustion chamber;proper burning of wood reduces or eliminates smoke.
2.By providing good insulation to the combustion chamber loss of heat is prevented.
3.The heat is efficiently transferred to the vessel/pot by providing a skirt round the vessel.
these details are presented in the figure in the next posting.


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