The Eco Stove is a revolutionary product. It was invented in Uganda by Rose Twine and is manufactured there. It is already being deployed in some refugee camps. I met Rose this week in Kampala.
This model retails for 900,000 shillings (£190) and has a 30 Watt Solar PV panel which powers 2 LED lights, 2 USB sockets for charging mobile phones, an FM radio, an mp3 music player and a Fan which drives air through the cooker, raising the cooking temperature and eliminating smoke. Brilliantly simple, appropriate technology. It can burn charcoal residue (dust and small pieces) which is MUCH cheaper than standard charcoal. Finally, pieces of volcanic rock are used to trap and re-radiate the heat – this further improves the efficiency of the cooker.
A simpler, cheaper model is available for 550,000 shillings (£118) which can burn either firewood or charcoal and has a 20 Watt Solar panel which powers 2 LED lights, 1 USB socket and a Fan.
The Eco Stove can be used at any time and in any season, whereas Solar Cookers are most appropriate during the long hot dry season.
We now think that both Eco Stoves and Solar Cookers have a place in Uganda, with the Eco Stove having the edge! The Haines Solar Cooker costs about £20.