CES Cook Stove Project

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Cummins Emission Solutions Vice President and General Manager Srikanth Padmanabhan kicks off the stove design competition at a rally in Columbus, Ind. in August.

Cummins Emission Solutions’ partnership with Prakti Design to build a better cook stove is off and running with 42 teams from multiple Cummins locations participating in a design competition.

Prakti CEO Mouhsine Serrar says he hopes Cummins’ research and development support will result in the next generation of cook stove – cleaner, more efficient and durable while still affordable for people living in developing countries.

“We look forward to working with someone who has some expertise, who can take a fresh view …of the problem and maybe point to a different approach to achieving our goal,” said Serrar, whose India-based company is a global leader in cook stove design (to see an interview with Serrar, click here).

Participating teams at Emission Solutions facilities in Beijing, China; Columbus, Ind.; Darlington, U.K.; Guarulhos, Brazil; Helmond, Netherlands; Janesville, Wis.; Marktheidenfeld, Germany; Mineral Point, Wis.; Pune, India; and Stoughton, Wis. have until Jan. 31, 2013 to submit their designs.

Then, up to five entries will be chosen by two panels of judges for stove prototype building and testing. Finally, at least one winning stove design will be chosen; that stove will be put into production at Prakti’s manufacturing plant in India.

“Many of the words we talk about in our business – PM (particulate matter), NOx (oxides of nitrogen), and hydrocarbons – are the same words we talk about with indoor air pollution but in a much more confined space,” said Amit Soman, General Manager – Emerging Emission Business for Cummins Emission Solutions, and the leader of the cook stove project.

Indoor air pollution generated largely by inefficient and poorly ventilated cook stoves is responsible for the deaths of about 1.6 million people around the globe annually, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

More than half of these deaths occur among children five or younger, the WHO says. In developing countries with high mortality rates, indoor air pollution ranks fourth among the risk factors that contribute to death and disease.

The stove competition was launched after Cummins Emission Solutions leaders decided they wanted to pursue a corporate responsibility project that would be global in nature and comprehensive in scope.

“Being a division that produces products that reduce harmful emissions around the globe, we felt that it was appropriate that we should focus on the environment,” said Cummins Emission Solutions Vice President and General Manager Srikanth Padmanabhan.

After an exhaustive effort to gather input from Cummins Emission Solutions’ 1,400 employees, as well as others, leaders decided to focus on indoor air pollution/clean air and more specifically cook stoves.

The topic also aligns well with the skills and talent of Cummins Emission Solutions employees. The business develops and produces various engine emission solutions. These solutions are designed to meet Euro IV to Euro VI, EPA 2007 to EPA 2016 Tier IV to Stage IV regulations worldwide. The business has grown from nothing in 2002 to $1.2 billion in sales in 2011.

On Aug. 13, 2012, Cummins Emission Solutions kicked off the competition with a symposium that included Serrar who had several of his cook stoves on hand. Similar events followed at other Cummins Emission Solutions sites globally.

To learn more about clean cooking stoves, and the environmental and health impacts of inefficient stoves, visit the website of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves. You can also find information at http://www.cleancookstoves.org/resources/fact-sheets/igniting-change.pdf.

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