Team EcoFlame members (left to right) Enoch Nanduru, Ambarish Khot ,Nitin Pise ,Suhaschandra Gaddamwar, Mayur Pote, Mahesh Jamdade and Jagjyot Saluja stand with the prototype of their cook stove design.
Posted: Dec. 19
Team EcoFlame, a group of engineers from Cummins Research and Technology India Limited, is the winner of Cummins Emission Solutions’ (CES ) first global cook stove design competition.
Judges said the combustion technology of EcoFlame’s design set the team apart. Five teams from Cummins facilities in Germany, India and the United States were finalists. EcoFlame’s stove will now go into production as part of the business unit’s partnership with Prakti Design to build a cleaner, more efficient cook stove.
Millions of people, primarily in rural areas around the world, face serious health risks because of the smoke they inhale from poorly designed, inefficient cook stoves.
“I am really impressed with the design of the cook stove by our employees,” said Srikanth Padmanabhan, Vice President and General Manager for CES. “The idea of crowd-sourcing and improving an existing design was new to Cummins Emission Solutions when we launched the design competition in 2012. I am enormously pleased at the outcome.”
The winning team in the design competition was announced on Dec. 3, 2013. EcoFlame team members include Ambarish Khot, Suhaschandra Gaddamwar, Enoch Nanduru, Jagjot Saluja, Kishor Deshmukh, Mahesh A Jamdade and Mayur Pote.
“What we liked best about the competition was that it compelled us to think beyond stereotype boundaries,” said EcoFlame Team Leader Ambarish Khot. “It united us to engage our technical expertise for social welfare.”
EcoFlame’s design not only meets all Indian government requirements for thermal efficiency and emissions of both particulate matter and carbon monoxide, but it is also able to reduce the particulate emissions of current Prakti stoves by a factor of four (and current Indian requirements by a factor of six).
Cummins teams were tasked with designing a new or improved, clean-burning cook stove along with a marketing plan detailing stove performance, intended markets and unique stove qualities.
Twenty-seven teams submitted concepts and the top five designs were determined during an extensive judging process held earlier in 2013. Cummins employees, including experts in combustion, technology and environmental strategy, and a former cook stove business owner, judged all of the project submissions. Prakti independently reviewed the submissions. Cummins and Prakti’s notes were compared to determine the designs for the prototype building phase.
Prototypes of the top five designs were built at Prakti’s manufacturing facility in Chennai, India, and shipped to Maharana Pratap University of Agriculture and Technology in Udaipur, India, for testing. Prakti, one of the world’s top cook stove manufacturers, reviewed the test results to determine the competition winner.
“The Prakti/Cummins partnership proved to be a great success,” said Mouhsine Serrar, Co-Founder and CEO of Prakti Design. “Prakti would like to thank all the participants for a wonderful effort and the significant contribution to Prakti’s technology road map for the future.
“We are now anxious to incorporate the new EcoFlame technology in our production portfolio,” he added. “We are looking forward to continuing this technical collaboration, as well as starting new partnerships with Cummins’ business, sales and marketing professionals.”
The design competition is part of Project S.T.E.A.M. (Standards, Testing and design, Education, Application and Monitoring), a CES global corporate responsibility project. The business unit, a global leader in designing, manufacturing and integrating exhaust aftertreatment technology for on- and off-highway engines, was looking for a project that would put its employees’ unique skills to work.
The cook stove initiative will now focus on successfully introducing more efficient cooking stoves to people who currently use stoves that emit a lot of smoke, putting their health at risk. This phase is scheduled to begin in early 2014.
“We had over 250 people who participated and the top five designs were truly innovative,” Padmanabhan said. “The idea of building the prototypes and testing them at a university in India, and the whole exercise being global, was novel and elegant. All the participants should be proud of the accomplishment and I congratulate the EcoFlame team in winning the design competition.”
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