Bangalore, Apr 19: In a significant contribution to check environmental issues posed by wooden stoves through emission of smoke and toxic gases, Philips has come out with a new stove that would reduce smoke emission by up to 80 per cent and would soon hit the Indian rural market.
Royal Philips Chief Technology Officer Rick Harwig, in a media roundtable here today, announced that the woodstove, developed by Philips Research India, had been successfully tested. It had been labelled the cleanest wood burning stove by Aprovecho Research Centre, involved in research on alternative technologies that were ecologically sustainable and culturally responsive.
The Philips stove cut smoke and toxic emissions, which according to reports claim 1.6 million lives a year. It also burnt more efficiently to reduce the load on the existing energy supply chain, without involving dependance on non-renewable energy sources. It could benefit up to 300 million people, he said.
Dr Harwig said when properly used, the woodstove typically reduced fuel consumption up to 80 per cent, compared to traditional three stone fires. Apart from faster and more convenient cooking, this energy efficient stove could save the time needed to gather fuel and should also slow deforestation.
Last year, trials were carried out in different parts of the country and the immediate acceptation level had led to Philips deciding to set up a commercial plant later this year in India.
Philips research was looking for partners to market the technology in rural areas difficult to reach through the existing distribution channels of the company, he added.
Dr Harwig said Philips was prompted to develop the innovative woodstove as the World Health Organisation had identified indoor air pollution as a major risk to the health of women and children in the world's poorest countries. The stove had an electronically-controlled fan, forcing air through the stove, leading to higher temperatures and a better fuel to air ratio. A thermo-electric generator using heat from the buring wood generated electricity for the fan. Apart from ensuring autonomy for electricity supplies, the generator could also power external equipment such as radio or lighting.
Philips research also optimised the construction of the stove for low thermal mass and good insulation. The flame was comparable to that emitted by gas or oil burners, he added.
Dr Harwig announced that Philips would test launch India's first digital Satellite TV, targetted at semi-urban and rural areas, next month. The television would be a simple, yet advanced entertainment solution to true digital quality picture and sound for cable-dry semi-urban and rural areas.
The innovative product solution had an integrated set top box into a 15 inch CRT monitor display, wherein the digital satellite signal was of high quality. It also had an external multimedia speaker with high sound output, resulting in a convergence product, TV, PC and radio, he added.
Digital Television was in response to the immense popularity of digital broadcasting of Direct to Home signals from Prasar Bharati.
Called Philips Satellite Vardan, the TV also comes with a high quality dish antenna and LNB for excellent reception of satellite signals anywhere in the country. Apart from television channels, the consumer could also access more than ten FM radio programmes.
Philips Innovation Campus here, the second largest of Philips in the world, had developed the first prototypes of this path-breaking innovation and the product had been successfuly test marketed in the cable-dry areas of West Bengal and Tamil Nadu.
Vardhan would be introduced at an affordable price at all consumer electronic retail outlets across the country.