[Stoves] Shields E450c as a way totest char-making stoves(attn: GACC testers)

Kevin kchisholm at ca.inter.net
Fri Oct 25 13:24:45 MDT 2013

Dear Paul

You are looking at things through the wrong end of the telescope. :-)

Char from a TLUD is perhaps 90% Char and 10% ash, while char from a "Full Combustion Stove might be 1% to 10% of the ash pit content. 

One might easily pick out a few larger lumps of char from ash, but sifting through the ash to get the smaller pieces is indeed a messy job. As you state below..."I am not arguing a point.   I am stating a fact." :-)

The issues here are:
1: Testing "Full Combustion Stoves"
2:  Testing "Char making Stoves"

Before you close down the discussion, would you kindly address the following questions that I have asked you twice previously?
  What would you think about the following proposal for "stove testing rules"?
  1: Stove Manufacturers shall state whether their stove is a "full burning stove" or a "char producing stove.
  2: "Full burning stoves" shall have a "Fuel Efficiency Test."
  3: "Char producing stoves" shall have BOTH a "Fuel Efficiency Test", and an "Energy Efficiency Test."

  Does that sound practical, fair and reasonable to you?
Note that the "Energy Efficiency Test" required for Char Producing Stoves would require a calorimetric determination of the char production, to confirm the actual energy content lost to the char. I feel it would be unfair, un-necessary, and wasteful to burden "Full Combustion Stoves" with the cost and nuisance of such tests. However, such tests would indeed be meaningful and helpful for Char making Stoves.

You bring up the point that "... The char can be burned immediately (that is, not extinguished) in a charcoal stove, or can be extinguished for saving for later burning or for placement into soil as biochar....". Note that the fuel Efficiency of a "Char Making Stove" cannot properly be credited with the energy in the char that was used to fuel a Charcoal Stove. The Charcoal Stove is a "second stove" and it should be tested for its "Fuel Efficiency", and the second stove should rise or fall on its own merits.  Charcoal used as biochar  ceases to be a stove concern. 

Paul Oliver has outlined a wonderful set of circumstances, where people can buy rice hulls, do their cooking, and sell the char production for more than their fuel cost. There is certainly a place for "Char Producing Stoves" Is Paul Oliver's "Char Making Stove" design better than other Char Making Stoves"? A good set of science based tests would enable the Stove Buyer to decide which was the best "Char Making Stove" to buy.

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Paul Anderson 
  To: Discussion of biomass cooking stoves 
  Sent: Friday, October 25, 2013 12:34 PM
  Subject: Re: [Stoves] Shields E450c as a way totest char-making stoves(attn: GACC testers)

  Dear Kevin, and info to all Stovers

  I am tired of the banter back and forth, but something you wrote really needs to be pointed out to show that you do not really understand about charcoal making in TLUD stoves and others that make a relatively high percentage of char.

  Kevin wrote: 
    Recovery of char from ash is a dirty, unpleasant job, and only desperate people would recover char from ash for re-burning. 

  Well, the truth is that char from TLUDs actually holds virtually all of the ash in the char particles (as is done in the traditional making of charcoal also).  There is no need to separate char from ash, and it cannot be done without burning the char.   The char can be burned immediately (that is, not extinguished) in a charcoal stove, or can be extinguished for saving for later burning or for placement into soil as biochar.

  And if the percentage of ash needs to be calculated (once ever 100 tests maybe??), it can be easily and cleanly done be separately burning the char to recover the ash that was in it.

  I am not arguing a point.   I am stating a fact.


Doc  /  Dr TLUD  /  Prof. Paul S. Anderson, PhD  
Email:  psanders at ilstu.edu   
Skype: paultlud      Phone: +1-309-452-7072
Website:  www.drtlud.comOn 10/25/2013 9:11 AM, Ronal W. Larson wrote:

    List:  CC Kevin 

       I presume Kevin wanted this to go to the full list.


    On Oct 25, 2013, at 7:47 AM, "Kevin" <kchisholm at ca.inter.net> wrote:

      Dear Ron
        ----- Original Message ----- 
        From: Ronal W. Larson 
        To: Kevin ; Discussion of biomass cooking stoves 
        Sent: Friday, October 25, 2013 12:53 AM
        Subject: Re: [Stoves] Shields E450c as a way totest char-making stoves(attn: GACC testers)

        Kevin and list

           There are many reasons for one test procedure rather than two:

              All stoves can produce char.  It depends on when and how you stop their operation.

        # Where fuel economy is important, then stoves would be run in a manner to minimize char production. 

              I have participated in a lot of stove testing - and users have always saved their char. 

        # I would suggest that the stove tests that you have participated in were structured so that reported results were better when the char was recovered and its energy content was deducted from the input fuel. Recovery of char from ash is a dirty, unpleasant job, and only desperate people would recover char from ash for re-burning. A "Full Combustion Stove" test could include screening of ash for capture and weighing of char, to show how little was produced, as a percentage of fuel input. A "low percentage of char production" would be a great selling point for Stove Buyers wanting to maximize fuel economy. 

         Char has value, no matter how little is made.

        # That is true only if the char is put to a use where its value is returned to the Fuel Buyer. A dollar bill has value only if it is exchanged for goods or services... it has no value if it is torn up and tossed to the winds.

              If there is zero char, then there is no extra cost.

        # That is true also, but if, as you say above, "...all stoves can produce char..." then all stoves could be burdened with the extra cost of detrermination of the energy content of the char produced. A "Full Combustion Stove" that produced say 1/2% of fuel input weight as char would be required to do the "char energy content test", the same as a TLUD producing say 30% char. That makes no sense.

              You will not be able to compare between tests using the present protocol unless you know the amount of char produced.
              There are decades of tests with char production records.  You will lose the ability to compare progress if you stop measuring char.

        # The Proposed Testing Protocols are based on science and clarity, and are intended to remove the confusion, inaccuricies, and misdirection assocated with past testing protocols. Comparing "accurate test results" with "inaccurate test results" serves no useful purpose.

              Some char-making stoves are more efficient (less annual input material) than many that have no intended production. 

        # True. 

         You need the charcoal amount to show that.

        # No, you don't. Just measure fuel input required to accomplish a given "stove task." That alone will tell you what stove is more "Fuel Efficient."

              Many experts have Ok'd the existing tests. 

        # The existing tests have served a purpose in the past. Now, however, the short-comings and inaccuracies of previous tests are recognized, and are in the process of being corrected.

         Changing the procedures will cost time and money.

        # True. However, clear and accurate test results will save the Funding Agencies and Individual Stove Customers huge amounts of money in the future by enabling the Purchaser to select stoves that are best suited for their intended purposes.

              Every stove manufacturer should want the charcoal included - including char makes the efficiency numbers look better  (not as good it could/should, but better).

        # This is perhaps a significant part of the problems with the present stove testing procedures... they were configured by Stove Manufacturers, to make their stoves look good. Testing protocols are dishonest, if they are constructed "... to make the efficiency numbers look better..."  The Proposed test protocols are constructed around science, truth, and clarity.

              Those arguing for a change have given no good reason for that change other than saving a small dollar amount. 

        # One very good reason for changing the present stove testing protocols is that the proposed stove testing procedures will enable Stove Customers to purchase stoves that are best suited to accomplishing their targets or goals. Others who know more about Stoves than I do can give many other good reasons for improving the Stove Testing Protocol.

              Much present stove testing is free to the manufacturer - and they will/should learn a lot from knowing how much energy is in the char - if they desire to get rid of it.

        # If someone is attempting to build a Fuel Efficient Stove, and if they see significant char in the ashpit, they don't need tests to tell them that they are doing something significantly wrong. 
        "Char in Ash Pit = Back to Drawing Board." 
        On the other hand, the designer of a "Char Making Stove" will indeed find tests on char production and energy content very important. However, it is unfair to burden a Fuel Efficient Stove manufacturer with the requirement to test the char, when  he already knows that char production will cut into the Fuel Efficiency Rating for his stove.  
        There are probably more; this list is not intended to be exhaustive.

        # I find that:
        1: your above points do not justify retaining present Stove Testing Protocols
        2: it is unfair and un-necessary to burden "Full Combustion Stove Manufacturers" with the cost of testing charcoal for its energy content.
        3: that the proposed Stove Testing Protocols will be much more helpful to the Stove Buyer, and will greatly help the Stove Buyer select a stove that best meets his wants and needs.

        # If you have otrher reasons for wanting to stay with teh present Stove Testing Protocols, please present them for consideration.




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