Cover Image
close this book Boiling Point No. 37 - June 1996 : Household Energy in Emergency Situations
Open this folder and view contents Theme articles
View the document GTZ News
Open this folder and view contents Non - Theme Articles
Open this folder and view contents News
Open this folder and view contents Publications
View the document Letters


Dear Editor,

Thank you for sending me a copy of your journal; congratulations for the various interesting articles on the different aspects of solar cooking and cooking in general.

Unfortunately, your editorial in BP36 contains some outdated information: you write that 'potatoes, cassava, yams and beans need to be well boiled before they can be safely put into a solar cooker'. As a look on pages 29 to 31 shows, these products can be very well boiled - in a good solar cooker. The best performance boxes can reach boiling (values for 80 in brackets) in 42 ( 10) minutes, and keep boiling without any user intervention for 195 (290) minutes. The best flat plate collector cooker performance is a heat-up time of 11 (6) minutes and boiling without user intervention for 172 (240) minutes. The best concentrators take 32 (20) minutes for heat-up and keep boiling for 100 (155) minutes: these are just the performance of cookers with out heat storage: tests show that heat storage permits many hours of boiling while back-up heating will keep food boiling for over three days without any sun. on a 3kg gas bottle - enough for a potato.

On the other hand, some of the tested cookers failed to reach boiling temperature, the worst performance being 73 reached in two hours, under the full sun. We have been warned about botulism, eg in canned tomatoes. Also, operating errors could cause problems: if the cook forgets to open the lid on the cooker, it will fail to heat up, just like sticks of wood that the cook forgets to light.

Please: wood saving cooking techniques such as improved stoves or solar cookers face enough problems as it is. No need to invent new ones.

But this is just a detail - your publication is a valuable source of information - most of all, keep up your critical editorials to orient your readers in a field where partial information is no exception.

Sincerely yours, Dr Michael Grupp European Committee for Solar Cooking Research {ECSCR)

Dear Editor,

Thank you for publishing the Sunstove articles in BP36. Your readers may be interested to hear that the Brace Research Institute* of McGill University, Montreal published a Solar Cooker Manual that is probably the most comprehensive report on solar cookers.

On page 2 of BP36 there are three errors:

1 I am sure that beans, potatoes etc require pre-boiling in England, but this is not necessary in Southern Africa.

2 The Sunstove™ eliminated the necessity for the cook to stand in the hot sun.

3 Over 4,000 moulded SunstovesTM and 900 round SunstovesTM have been disseminated (sold at cost) in South Africa.

1,200 sunstoves are being built and will be sold in the USA and Nicaragua this spring. The Refugee™, a smaller, low-cost model, that can be assembled on site, will be available for relief organizations in a few months. Patents and instructions on all models are available free of charge to financially established, nonprofit organizations.

Thank you for bringing solar cooking to the foreground.

Very truly yours, Richard C. Wareham Sunstove

Technical Enquiries to ITDG

If you have any technical enquiries, ITDG's Technical Enquiry Unit (TEU) should be able to help you. ITDG has extensive contacts within the UK and Europe, and can respond on a wide variety of topics. If your enquiries are about stoves or household energy, then our stove team can also help.

Please send all enquiries to:

The Technical Enquiry Unit Intermediate Technology MysonHouse Railway Terrace Rugby

CV21 3HT


Tel: +44 (0)1788 560631

Fax: +44 (0)1788 540270

Telex: 317466 ITDG G


(Please give your postal, as well as your email, address)

Back Issues of Boiling Point

If you would like a copy of any back issues, please contact us. Multiple copies will be charged at 2 per copy plus postage. A detailed index of all Boiling Point articles is also available, and will shortly be produced on disk.

12 - Alternative Fuels

13 - Safer and Less Smoky Stove

14 - Kitchens, Pots and Cooking Practices

15 - Stove Progress in Kenya and Sri Lanka

16 - Muds, Clays and Metals for Stove Making

17 - Fault Finding and Fixing

18 - Stove Programmes in the 90s

19 - Stoves Will Not Sell Themselves

20 - Non-biomass Stoves

21 - Stoves, Energy and the Environment

22 - Other Uses for Stoves

23 - Measures of Success

24 - Solar Energy

25 - Funding for Stove


26 - Technology and Design Transfer

27 - Women, Woodfuel, Work and Welfare

28 - Biomass Combustion, Chimneys and Hoods

29 - Household Energy Developments in Southern and East Africa

30 - Sales and Subsidies

31 - Clays for Stoves

32 - Energy for the Household.

33 - Household Energy Developments in Asia

34 - Smoke Removal

35 - How Much Can NGOs Achieve

36 - Solar Energy in theHome

Editorial and Production Team

Ian Grant

- Editor

Sandra Gibson

- Secretary/Producer

John Twigg

- Theme Editor

Steve Fisher

- ITUK Energy Programme


Smail Khennas

- International Programme


Agnes Klingshirn - GTZ Representative

Cornelia Sepp - GTZ Editor

Other Editorial

Panel Members - Ann Watts, Mark Waltham,

Pete Young


G Beaumont, S Fisher, Tran Quoc Giam, S Gitonga, I Grant, M Grupp, G Jensen, S Khennas, W Micuta, W Nyabeze, M Owen, R Papafio, B Ross, E Umlas, Er L C Verma, R Wareham. Cartoons provided by Pete Bradbrook, Debbie Riviere and Wambu

Contributions to Boiling Point

Contributions are invited for the next three issues of Boiling Point, the themes of which will be:

BP38: Dec 1996-Household energy and cooking for cold high regions.

The two editions for 1997 will be 'Health and Smoke' and 'Residue Fuels and Stoves'

Articles for BP38 should reach the Boiling Point office by 11 Oct 1996.

Contributions are welcome in the form of articles of not more than 2000 words, including line drawings, photographs, simple graphs, cartoons or illustrations, where appropriate. All correspondence should be addressed to Boiling Point, ITDG, Energy Programme, Myson House, Railway Terrace, Rugby, CV21 3HT.

Boiling Point is the journal of the Intermediate Technology Development Group's Energy Programme (HEP) of GTZ. It is printed on recycled paper by the RCS Printworks (affiliated to the Rugby Youth Promotion Programme).

Opinions expressed in contributory articles are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the ITDG or GTZ.

As you know, we are no longer charging subscriptions to Boiling Point but would welcome donations to cover the cost of production.

(c) Intermediate Technology Development Group 1996.

Intermediate Technology enables poor people in the Third World to develop and use technologies and methods which give them more control over their lives and which contribute to the bag term development of their communities.

intermediate Technology is a British charity mainly funded by the Overseas Development Adrnindtration.

Intermediate Technology Development Group Ltd., Patron: HRH The Price of Wales KG, KT, GCB

Company Reg No. 871954, England. Reg. Charity No. 247257