Son of Five Rivers Blog

For the advancement of Entrepreneurship, Sustainability & the Ecology of Everyday Life

Chulha (Traditional Stove in India)

Research cited by the World Health Organization indicates that nearly half the world continues today to cook with solid fuels including dung, wood, agricultural residues and coal. Such “bio-mass” fuels are blamed for diseases that result in deaths numbered in more than one million per year.

The Chulha is a stove designed to limit the dangerous health conditions caused by traditions of indoor cooking in many rural areas of the developing world.

BIO-MASS BREAKTHROUGH

The way the design teams behind the Chulha stove design like to put it, they’re “helping 400 million people give up smoking.”

What at INDEX: is called Design to Improve Life is termed, at Philips Design, “Philanthropy by Design.” And Philips’ teams in India and the Netherlands have worked together to create this smokeless response to a vast health problem.

Initially intended for rural and semi-urban parts of India, the design is intended to take the dangers of indoor cooking with bio-mass fuels out of an equation that health officials say affects the health of millions of people each year.

Bio-mass fuels include wood, dung and other substances which, when burned give off an array of particles dangerous to human respiratory systems. Adequately ventilated in an outdoor setting, there usually is no problem with such cooking. But by one estimate, as many as half the people of the world may still be cooking indoors with bio-mass fuels. And trapped inside, the smoke involved can become a lethal mix of indoor pollutants.

As the Philips design teams have noted, once they began to study the problem, the range of application was a huge issue. “The stove would have to accept different bio-mass fuels,” the teams wrote, “be widely available in different seasons and locations, adapt to people’s needs when cooking chapatti (bread), steaming rice, boiling water, and be able to accept different non-standard cooking vessels.”

The improved stove directs the smoke out of the house through a chimney. Philips went on to make its intellectual property on the design available free of charge – even working to develop molds that would allow NGOs (non-governmental organizations as identified by the UN) to make the stoves for people who need them the most.

One of the NGOs Philips has identified as a partner in the development of the Chulha is the Appropriate Rural Technology Institute of India.

Chulha

Chulha1

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August 26, 2009 - Posted by | Community Economic Development (CED), Creativity, Education, Family, Government, Great Ideas, Inspiration, Life, Not for Profit, Packaging, Philanthropy, Products, Sustainability, Sustainable Community Development | , , ,

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