The 2016 Pellet Stove Design Challenge (which is organized by the Alliance for Green Heat) was a three day international stove technology competition with a focus on spotlighting innovative and high performing pellet stoves and prototypes. The event also held extensive stove demonstrations/testing, presentations and round-table discussions with industry experts, researchers, scientists, policy-makers and students, among others. The main purpose of this competition is to promote innovation in wood and pellet heating, as well as help to reduce fossil fuel heating with the use of cleaner and more efficient stoves.
“These stove events serve to identify and highlight innovations which can result in far cleaner use of renewable biomass fuels. These innovations are critically needed if biomass is to be a part of our energy future.” – Tom Butcher, U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory
“Many people think they know what a wood stove or a pellet stove is. We want to challenge the perceptions of consumers, but equally important is the renewable energy community and policymakers who steer that community.” – John Ackerly, Alliance for Green Heat
Seven finalists competed for the winning pellet stove design with low emissions and high efficiency. Each of the teams showcased a presentation on the design and operation of their stove, and how they achieved the high-level performance improvement.
The first place winners were Rene Bindig and Niels Wittus of Wittus Fire by Design – a company based in New York which focuses on the contemporary European marketplace.
Their winning prototype, the Wittus Pellwood Stove, can burn both pellets and firewood – all while achieving emissions of less than half a gram/hour. This design allows firewood to be burned if pellets are unavailable or if the power goes out. This prototype is also impressive because it would allow wood pellets to be burned during the day while no one is home – then able to switch to the relaxing ambiance of firewood burning in the evening.
The second place winner was the Phoenix F25i by Seraph Industries is actually very close to being ready for certification testing.
Third place went to the Torrefire by Torrefire Stoves – a radiant heat stove with a glass burn pot that burns torrefied wood pellets.
The 2016 Pellet Stove Design Challenger received funding by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, as well as the U.S. Forest Service, Brookhaven National Lab, state agencies from Massachusetts and Washington, and experts from Clarkson University, the Masonry Heater Association and the Osprey Foundation. For more information on this event and the other participants, check out this report by the Alliance for Green Heat.