Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Woodstock Soapstone, Travis and Wittus Win the Wood Stove Decathlon

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: November 20, 2013

Woodstock Soapstone, Travis and Wittus    Win the Wood Stove Decathlon

Catalytic, Masonry and Electronically Controlled Stoves Show High Results in Testing

Washington D.C. – In an international competition to significantly reduce pollution from wood stoves on the National Mall, one finalist, Woodstock Soapstone of New Hampshire, won first prize of $25,000. Two other teams, Travis of Washington State and Wittus of New York, were awarded $5,000 each. The teams were recognized for all around performance in efficiency and emissions, affordability, consumer appeal and innovation. Members of Congress Dan Benishek (R-MI), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Jared Huffman (D-CA), Paul Tonko (D-NY) took part in the awards ceremony.

The Woodstock Soapstone Team
In accepting the first prize of $25,000, Woodstock Soapstone owner Tom Morrissey announced that he was giving part of the prize money to two other teams - Walker Stove and Intensi-Fire - who had come to the Decathlon on a shoestring and needed funds for their work. Travis donated their $5,000 to the Alliance for Green Heat to help pay for the expenses of the Decathlon.

“These award-winning technologies are part of the solution for millions of Americans to reduce their reliance on fossil heating fuels,” said John Ackerly Founder and President of the Alliance for Green Heat, which organized the Wood Stove Decathlon. "We'd like to thank all the teams for participating and contributing to an ongoing educational effort to help the US government appreciate the potential of cleaner and more efficient wood heating," Ackerly added.

Competitors represented a wide range of wood stove technologies. Two of the top three winners were catalytic hybrid stoves. While the three masonry stoves did not take home prizes, they had some of the highest scores in efficiency and cleanliness.  

The Wittus Twin Fire, that was tied for second prize overall, scored highest in the efficiency category. Travis’s Cape Cod Hybrid, which also tied for second overall, scored highest in consumer appeal and for low carbon monoxide. The Hwam 3630 IHS scored highest in innovation, with its oxygen sensor and control device that alerted the consumer when and how much wood to reload. The Woodstock Soapstone, which won the Grand Prize, also won in the affordability category. And the University of Maryland’s stove, the Mulciber, won in the lowest particulate matter category. 

The overall ranking of stoves was:













The competition differed from EPA tests of wood stoves in several key respects to more closely resemble how consumers use stoves. First, the stoves in the competition were tested using cordwood instead of 2x4s and 4x4s. Second, technicians loaded stoves with 12 pounds of wood per cubic foot of firebox space for the first round of testing, whereas EPA only uses 7 pounds of wood per cubic foot.

Two of the stoves made small amounts of electricity and four had electronic control systems. More detailed analysis will be forthcoming. The primary funders of the Wood Stove Decathlon are NYSERDA, the Osprey Foundation, the District of Columbia Urban Forestry Administration, the US Forest Service, the West Penn Power Sustainable Energy Fund and the Arbolito Foundation. 

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The Alliance for Green Heat is an independent non-profit that promotes high-efficiency wood heating as a low-carbon, sustainable and affordable heating solution. The Alliance seeks to make wood heat a cleaner and more efficient renewable energy option, particularly for those who cannot afford fossil fuel heat.

1 comment:

  1. Many thanks to the Alliance for Green Heat for putting on this competition. We hope to see more of this type in the future.

    Also congratulations to the winners and all the contestants. We had a wonderful time in DC and to see these wonderful stoves and to meet and talk to their owners and/or creators was very educational and exciting. The future looks great for wood heat.

    Mr & Mrs D. Cook