Dr. Tom Reed: “Smoking Backwards”

Dr. Tom Reed: “Smoking Backwards”

Our beautiful friend Tom Reed (1926-2018) at a Winter Stove Camp

ONE: Starting in 1985, Tom invented the natural and forced draft Top Lit Up Draft stoves (TLUD). He would demonstrate one of the clean burning principles at Stove Camps by lighting the tip of a cigarette and then sucking on the burning end in his mouth. With practice, he did not burn his tongue.  Remarkable!

Sucking the woodgas through the burning end of the cigarette cleaned up a lot of the harmful gases and protected him from most of the smoke. Similarly, lighting the top of the fuel bed in a vertical cylinder pulled the made woodgas up through the charcoal bed and flame in a TLUD. (UP DRAFT)

TWO: In the same way, sticks of wood can be placed in a horizontal cylinder, lit under the short chimney of a Rocket stove, where the made woodgas is pulled through the burning combustion zone resulting in cleaner combustion. (HORIZONTAL DRAFT)

THREE: We tune stoves under the emissions hood to reduce emissions by combining the proper 1.) amount of metered fuel turned into woodgas, 2.) temperature, 3.) air/fuel ratio, 4.) mixing, 5.) 100% of woodgas pulled into the flame, and 6.) long enough residence time of woodgas in the combustion zone.

FOUR: Before iterating changes in the stove to reduce emissions, we try to optimize heat transfer efficiency so the least amount of biomass completes the task.

FIVE: Tom, we remember you so fondly! Thanks for the help!

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