SCORE! New Biomass Cookstove Also Doubles As Electrical Generator

The vast majority of TreeHugger readers undoubtedly take for granted cooking on a stove that doesn't produce prodigious amounts of smoke every time you use it -- that smoke's produced elsewhere a lot of the time, at the power plant, but let's leave that aside. But in many places in the developing world biomass-fired cookstoves are the norm, and the indoor air pollution and health problems they cause are not insignificant. Now, researchers from the University of Nottingham are working on a high-efficiency biomass cookstove that also functions as an electrical generator

Called the SCORE (Stove for Cooking, Refrigeration and Electricity), the cookstove converts heat into acoustic energy and then into electricity through a linear alternator. Currently field trials are being conducted in Nepal:The final unit is expected to weigh in somewhere between 10-20 kilograms, using one kilogram of fuel (wood, dung, or any other locally-available biomass) per hour of use.

The target price for the unit is £20 ($33) -- seemingly dirt cheap, but remember that for many of the people this device is intended for that could be nearly a month's wage.

SCORE's developers are currently looking for sponsorships to conduct further field testing, with the goal of full production beginning sometime after 2012.

More: University of Nottingham & SCORE
photo: SCORE
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Tags: Alternative Energy | Biofuels | Developing Nations | Pollution | Renewable Energy