Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Meet the Contestants; Intercontinental

With the first Wood Stove Decathlon only a few months away, the Alliance for Green Heat is doing a weekly blog to showcase the Decathlon competitors. Take this opportunity to learn more about the teams and their stove’s innovative features.

Rod Zander of New England Hearth and Soapstone, has worked with masonry stoves for decades. He gained experienced in the interior mechanics of masonry stoves through several international apprenticeships. Among the nation’s foremost experts on masonry heat, Zander has taken this knowledge to develop a very unique stove that will compete in the Wood Stove Decathlon.

Perhaps aspiring to reach the international marketplace, the competing stove has been named Intercontinental 2B4W. Surely, its innovative features make the stove appealing regardless of which continent you’re on. The stove is an exciting new type of masonry stove that can be created from recycled materials. The recycled materials not only help reduce waste, but save both the manufacturer and consumer money. These readily available materials can easily be assembled with local labor cutting costs even more. It is hoped that these stoves will have a real application in developing countries, where other fuel sources are too expensive and current stoves are too polluting.

The form of the stove is composed of two used steel oil drums stacked on top of each other. The symbolism of the oil drums is not lost on the stove designers. The use of an antiquated fuel source’s containers expresses the continual shift towards renewable energy.

The heat is stored in high-density firebrick, which then radiates from 12-24 hours from 22 pounds of wood, fired two times a day at a high burn rate. This slow radiating heat follows the design concept of many masonry stoves.  

With a computer combustion control system from sponsor ClearStak LLC and an oxygen lambda sensor from ETAS, operator error decreases so that the owner uses less wood for more heat. This increase in efficiency helps lower the emissions of smoke particulates.

We are looking forward to seeing Intercontinental in action at the Wood Stove Decathlon November 16-19, 2013. Vote for your favorite stove at Popular Mechanics.

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