Bagan Nature

Last December, our technical expert visited Myanmar to set up new equipment, the Laboratory Emissions Monitoring System (LEMS), developed by Aprovecho. This will enable the team on site to measure cookstove emissions. The first guinea pigs are the A1, an improved cookstove, and the famous three stone fire, a traditional cookstove. The particulate matter (PM2.5) and CO rates are measured so the team can evaluate the cookstoves’ level of harmful emissions reduction.

Once the installation ends, the training begins. Our technical expert review the Water Boiling Test (WBT) and trains those responsible in the laboratory to handle the LEMS. Then, they reap the rewards of that work and analyse the results.

A1 tests

In total, 55 devices from 11 production centres have been sent to the laboratory. The team tested the devices using the WBT.

In a previous article, we talked about the differences between the WBT and the Adapted Water Boiling Test (AWBT). In this case, why did we use the WBT?

First, the team used the AWBT to determine the baseline for the A1 and then selected the most efficient model.

Then, the team used the WBT to compare the stoves according to the tiers defined in the International Workshop Agreement (IWA) standards (an ISO document written during workshops) and to identify more or less the efficiency and cleanliness level of the stoves globally.

What does the WBT measure?

·  Time To Boil (TTB, the time it takes for the water to boil),

·  Time To Test (TTT, total duration of the test), and

·  Energy Use (EU, the energy actually available to the consumer after final conversion).

In addition to these measures, the LEMS collects the level of PM 2.5, CO2, and CO emitted by cookstoves.

The results are different depending on the producer, which shows that A1 production varies according to the process used. Two A1 stoves, despite having the same name, can vary in their efficiency.

And the winner is…

…the A1 produced by the Forest Research Institute (FRI), which beats all records.

Wood fuel consumption was reduced with the A1 original. The results show that 778g of wood fuel is used to boil five litres of water using the A1 compared to 1125g using the three stone fire to boil the same quantity of water. As for the CO, the level is three times lower with the A1 compared to the three stone fire.

The best performance of the A1 concerns particulate matter. The combustion in the A1 cookstove emits three times less particulate matter than the three stone.

The A1 is undoubtedly cleaner and more efficient than the three stone fire.

What happens now?

The laboratory team is now able to conduct both the AWBT and WBT and to measure performance of any device.

The training is a milestone in the project that will enable the laboratory to measure potential improvements and emissions reductions of the A1 made by different producers involved in the project.

The programme seeks to reduce health risks for the users and to alleviate pressure on the environment.

© Picture by Guillén Pérez