Rocket Stoves and Wood Gas Burners
In Haiti, the majority of people still use wood and charcole fuel cut from mangrove swamps to cook their food, and the mangroves are disappearing fast...
Rocket stoves burn small sticks completely and efficiently by creating an insulated compustion chamber and a good flow of air to fuel the flames.
The OceansWatch team in Vanuatu has developed plans for a simple rocket stove (see picture above) that can be constructed out of locally available matierials, and can boil water quickly with very little fuel.
Wood gas burners
Wood gas burners have an inner and an outer
chamber. Air passes up through the wood
fuel as it burns in the inner chamber, and
wood gas that results is drawn into the outer
chamber. The outer chamber is also
ventilated from the bottom, so that the wood
gas can burn around the top edge of the
This type of design is often used by campers
and backpackers because it can run on just
small twigs, and it is surprisingly effective for cooking. It's also easy to make: in fact wood gas burners are a popular Boy Scout project! Try constructing your own out of tin cans using this tutorial from IntenseAngler.
As an alternative to charcole and wood, our stoves may be able to burn pellets made from coconut husks or other recycled materials, to further reduce the impact on the environment.