Waikato stu­dent’s de­sign a trail blazer

DEMM Engineering & Manufacturing - - NEWS -

Univer­sity of Waikato en­gi­neer­ing stu­dent Luke Sinclair has de­signed an ul­tra­light wood-fired stove that can boil a litre of wa­ter in less than 10 min­utes.

The tramp­ing enthusiast came up with the idea ear­lier this year when he and class mate Ken­dall Bris­tow com­pleted a 100-day, 3000km trek from Cape Reinga to Bluff.

“Peo­ple have al­ways looked to the wilder­ness for an es­cape from the chaos of every­day life, yet we of­ten bring with us shoul­der de­stroy­ing packs full of waste­ful gas can­is­ters. While ini­tially con­ve­nient, th­ese can­is­ters be­come less con­ve­nient when they run out and leave you in the mid­dle of a moun­tain range eat­ing cold beans,” says Luke.

Dur­ing a year-long re­search and de­sign project, as part of his fi­nal year Bach­e­lor of En­gi­neer­ing (Hon­ours), he com­pleted ex­ten­sive re­search and test­ing. His ini­tial idea has been de­vel­oped into a highly ef­fi­cient, light­weight and func­tional back­pack stove.

“The de­sign of the Trail Blazer in­te­grates rocket stove ef­fi­ciency with an outer cone that in­su­lates the cham­ber while also act­ing as a sturdy base. A re­mov­able feed tube al­lows easy ac­cess to the cham­ber when start­ing a fire and the feed tube is an­gled to al­low fuel to feed the fire au­to­mat­i­cally as it burns.”

The pro­to­type is made from stain­less steel, weigh­ing just 300g. But Luke hopes to im­prove the de­sign, by sourc­ing thin­ner stain­less steel and elim­i­nat­ing welds, to re­duce the weight fur­ther and de­crease pro­duc­tion costs.

Univer­sity of Waikato en­gi­neer­ing stu­dent Luke Sinclair with his ‘Trail Blazer’ pro­to­type at the re­cent Carter Holt Har­vey Pulp & Pa­per En­gi­neer­ing De­sign Show.

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