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New stove also charges your GPS, or lights or phone

mike

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Jun 29, 2009
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TEXAS!
This is kind of neat. A camping stove that also generates electricity to power or re-charge USB devices like your GPS, LED lights, cell phone, IPOD or whatever. POKE HERE

Mike
 

Kayak Jack

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Aug 26, 2003
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Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
A few weeks ago, a fellow was telling me how to get "free electricity". He has a battery bank running an inverter running an electric motor running a generator that recharges the batteries, and puts out additional power on top of recharging the batteries. Hmm, perpetual motion. (Not as perpetual as women talking - but close!)
 

Kayak Jack

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Aug 26, 2003
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Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
Yep, but I rally like the technology of the stove Mike showed us. It has a lot of possibilities downstream. Maybe we could use heat from the radiator on our car to charge the battery, and not have to run an alternator all the time? Or, use hot air from Congress to power the nation! Naww - Obama would tax it out of existence.
 

islandpiper

Well-Known Member
I'd like one of those "heat -to-voltage" units. I'm guessing that a sheet of cardboard and some tin foil made into a concentrating reflector, (think solar cooker) and Voila! electricity. Screw the cooker. I've got a couple of old coffee cans and some tinsnips. piper
 

mike

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Jun 29, 2009
681
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Think about the thermocoupler on your gas hotwater heater or furnace. It is a thermoelectric generator on a much smaller scale. The power it makes (or doesn't make) is what keeps gas from flowing if the pilot goes out. To see how this works on the stove POKE HERE. For more applications, POKE HERE.

Mike
 

Kayak Jack

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Aug 26, 2003
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Okemos / East Lansing Michigan
I was looking for a battery-type reaction there, Galvanic. But it wasn't mentioned. These could be immersed in an automobile radiator to help generate electricity and cool the engine. GM (Volt) will never think of it; maybe Toyota (Prius) will?
 

gbinga

Well-Known Member
Nov 7, 2008
736
2
Hoschton, GA
Items that run off of thermocouples (it isn't a new idea, although the campstove is a neat application)

A fan that sits on top of a stove. Heat powers the electric motor by way of a thermocouple:
http://store.colemans.com/cart/us-gi-th ... l9oj1vkef6

A similar fan, commercial rather than milsurp:
http://www.leevalley.com/US/gifts/page. ... 3209,50246

Some space probes actually carry a lump of plutonium surrounded by thermocouples to provide electric power in deep space where solar cells would not work. The plutonium is hot (because of radioactive decay) and lasts for many many years. The thermocouples last a long time too, being solid state devices with no moving parts.

I would think that someone could cobble together a stove like the one in the ad from off-the-shelf parts. As someone mentioned earlier, a thermocouple is a standard component in any water heater or furnace that has a pilot light. The heat from the pilot light heats the thermocouple, making enough power to hold the gas valve open. If the pilot light gets blown out, no more power, and the gas valve closes. So the mechanism (for making electricity out of a heat source) has been around for many years.
 

mike

Well-Known Member
Jun 29, 2009
681
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TEXAS!
Kayak Jack said:
What did I miss?
You missed the fact that Cotton is a spammer. He copied his text from the sales site and pasted it into his post along with a link to the very different product he is pushing. Chuck removed the link from his sig line, but it is still in his profile.

Mike
 

oldsparkey

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Aug 25, 2003
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Central , Florida
www.southernpaddler.com
mike said:
Kayak Jack said:
What did I miss?
You missed the fact that Cotton is a spammer. He copied his text from the sales site and pasted it into his post along with a link to the very different product he is pushing. Chuck removed the link from his sig line, but it is still in his profile.

Mike
I figured I had it covered with him by removing some of that information. It's simpler to just get rid of everything. :D

Jack ..What you missed was him. I also removed the posts answering or asking questions , including the one I posted. :wink:

Chuck.
 

bcwetcoast

Well-Known Member
Feb 11, 2012
92
0
One of my fellow Scout leaders just got a Biolite stove for his birthday, so we tried it out last weekend on a camp.

It is too big to use as a backpacker, but would be fine for a boat trip. When you light it up, the thermocouple heats up and creates enough power to run the fan (you need to have the internal battery charged first so the fan can operate while the fire is just warming up). Once it reaches high enough temps and the battery is charged, you can then charge an external device, through a USB hookup.

It is going to take a lot of heating and fire tending to put a significant charge in any device. His I phone charged about 2% in about 10-15 minutes. Now this is without a pot on top (it has an integral pot holder). I'm not sure whether having a pot on top, retaining more heat is going to generate more electricity.

It was an efficient wood burning stove, worked as a device charger, but I wouldn't count on it to charge your phone fast enough to watch TV on your phone.