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Power Pots

Discussion in 'Gadgets & Gear' started by Charlie Moore, Jun 17, 2012.

  1. Charlie Moore

    Charlie Moore

    259
    May 1, 2002
    "The PowerPot is a a portable electric generator that doubles as a cooking pot. It can be used indoors or outside and works with any fuel source. Unlike solar power, The PowerPot works day or night, rain or shine to bring you the electricity you need to keep charging, anytime, anywhere! We've reached our final stages of prototyping and it is time to bring this wonderful device to the market."

    http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1203647021/the-powerpot
     
  2. spyder10

    spyder10

    672
    Dec 19, 2005
    My question would be how much extra time does it take to boil water compared to a normal pot.

    It seems a solar panel strapped to your pack would be a better solution in my mind. Though being able to use the pot on an open fire could make it very useful on long hikes where you can make fires.

    I can't see wasting fuel from a stove to charge my phone though. That seems silly.
     
  3. Crewdawg

    Crewdawg

    926
    Mar 8, 2011
    Scam? I'm cynical. What are the physics behind it only working if there's water in the pot? Maybe I'm just ignant, but it sounds too simple...

    Like spyder says, how is this an efficient exchange of energy? Why wouldn't you demo it over a wood fire, with the selling point that as long as you have a flame of any sort, you can charge electronics? Solar powered batter pack makes way more sense.
     
  4. RevDevil

    RevDevil Super Evil Supermod Staff Member Super Mod

    Nov 9, 2009
    Power pot...what else? No opinion from the OP? I'm confused.
     
  5. MVF

    MVF Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 2, 2005
    I'm guessing that water in the pot protects the thermo-electrics from being overheated. I don't think you'd fire it up just to charge your phone (unless you really had to) - more like charge your phone while you're making coffee, or dinner.

    I'm guessing the laws of thermodynamics mean that it will take a bit longer to cook in than a plain aluminum pot- but I am just guessing.

    Not the end of world energy needs, but a pretty cool and useful gadget, especially in the third world. Also, possibly a start in a new area of energy production- maybe combine it with regular solar in areas that get hot? Who knows- every little bit helps.
     
  6. Gollnick

    Gollnick Musical Director

    Mar 22, 1999
    The thermopile needs a temperature difference. The water will boil and become a reliable 100-ish C. (Exact temperature depends on altitude, but not enough to matter.) If the fire is propane, it's just a bit under 2000C (I've forgotten the exact temp). Without water in the pot to cool the other side of the thermopile, the other side will heat up to close to the same temp as the flame side and little or no electricity will be produced.

    It's unusual for us to think of boiling water as a coolant. But, compared to a gas flame, boiling water is cold.
     
  7. Gollnick

    Gollnick Musical Director

    Mar 22, 1999
    You are, of course, correct. But how much less? The amount of electricity produced is on the order to 10 Watts. A small propane burner will produce something on the order of 1200W. So, if it took ten minutes to boil water in a regular pot, it can be expected to take about five seconds longer using the Power Pot, about 10/1200th more time. The amount of power removed is very small so the effect on cooking time is quite small. BUT, there is an error in this calculation. I have assumed that 100% of energy goes into the food. No. Most of the energy heats the environment. As a result, the impact on food cooking times will be much smaller.
     
  8. buckmaster96

    buckmaster96

    686
    Jan 6, 2012
    i thought it was cool when they said it could be used in a hotspring with snow inside
     
  9. MVF

    MVF Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 2, 2005
    Thanks Gollnick, good to know!
     
  10. Charlie Moore

    Charlie Moore

    259
    May 1, 2002
    I just thought it interesting from a new gear and technology integration standpoint. I had my fill of camping decades ago in the Army Infantry, so this item is not on my try or buy list. However, some may think it useful or be intrigued enough to give it a try.
     
  11. Crewdawg

    Crewdawg

    926
    Mar 8, 2011
    ^ what MVF said!
     
  12. spyder10

    spyder10

    672
    Dec 19, 2005
    And you forget to account for the difference in the heat capacity and thermal transfer through the additional mass of the pot bottom.

    I can only see this being useful on a large pot over an open fire used to boil water, where the extra fuel, time, and weight is not an issue.
     
  13. Skimo

    Skimo

    Mar 28, 2009
    Very useful, I hope it goes mainstream.
     
  14. Senserazer

    Senserazer

    174
    Apr 4, 2012
    I would definitely want to try this out. Anyone tried it yet?
     

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