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Can the BioLite stove really power my gadgets?

Q. That BioLite stove seems like a neat idea. But does it really work?
– Curious Tyler, Mundelein, Ill.

A. Hey Tyler. I’ve actually had the opportunity to test out the BioLite stove ($129, , and I think it’s a really great piece of gear. Basically it’s a mid-size camping stove that can also power your gadgets. You just toss some wood in there, light it up, and a tiny fan gets the fire really going. Then, while you cook dinner, the stove (through the miracle of science—I don’t quite understand how) converts the fire’s heat energy into electrical power so you can charge your GPS, satellite phone or camera or whatever via a USB plug right there from the stove. It’s a great stove, totally works; my only complaint would be that it’s a bit bulky and weighs about 2.25 pounds—which makes it a bit heavy for backpacking. That said, if your GPS was out of power and this thing got you un-lost then it’d be worth its weight and more!

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2 Comments on Can the BioLite stove really power my gadgets?

  1. TheDudeMan // May 2, 2015 at 10:05 am // Reply

    The stove is the size of a 32 ounce Nalgene water bottle. But, I was thinking: Every Scout should follow LNT (Leave No Trace) and picking up little twigs and stuff does not follow it. But maybe if you helped maintain a trail, you could pick up sticks along the way to your campsite or even bring twigs from home. But I think regular fuel stoves are a better option for Scouts.

  2. The way the stove works is to capture the heat using a peltier element. A peltier element is an electronic device that if you pass electricity through it, one side gets cold and the other side gets hot. By working in reverse, we make one side hot and the other side cold, and it will generate electricity. Google thermoelectric generators and you will see how the stove works. You can purchase peltier elements online and tin cans are usually free….
    Just a thought…

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