There have been a variety of innovative camping stoves popping up over the last few years, from the clever BioLite that can burn any biomass and also harness its heat energy to generate electricity, to the GoSun, a solar oven that can boil water in 30 minutes. The latest device making a play for camp kitchens is the Morphcooker, a portable, battery-powered electric camping stove.
The Morphcooker is a nifty little device that can expand from a flat hot plate to a pot simply by raising its adjustable sides. The cooker comes in two sizes, both with a maximum "pot" depth of 3.3 in (84mm): the Solo, which is 5 x 5 in (120 x 120 mm), or the Family size at 8 x 8 in (200 x200 mm).
One of the fundamental reasons we haven't seen a battery-powered electric camping stove take off in the market is that gas, or biomass fuels like wood, are simply incredibly efficient ways to generate heat and cook food. Morphcooker is claimed to use state-of-the-art battery technology, with the following specs listed on its Kickstarter page:
"Battery Specifications: the Morphcooker has 16 cells, where each is 2600 mAH at 3.7 volts, with 2 parallel groups of 8 in series, for a total of 29.6 volts at 5200 mAH.
We are assuming 27V for heating calculations, with 2.6V for electrical losses, plus an additional 30% for heating losses. This provides the following heating times:
Heating 250ml (8.5 oz) of water from 25 C. to 75 C (77 to 167 F) with a single element will take 4 minutes, and with two elements, it will take 2 minutes.
Heating 500ml (16.9 oz) of water from 25 C. to 100 C (77 to 212 F) with a single element will take 12 minutes, and with two elements, it will take 6 minutes.
The battery life will be 26 minutes at 100% power, 52 minutes at 50% power, and 1 hour/44 minutes at 25% power."
It's reasonable to be skeptical over how much power and heat this stove could generate and the company recently released a real-time video (below) showing the device successfully boiling water in about seven minutes. It's unknown how much of the battery capacity this action took, but the crowdfunding campaign does suggest that a battery can be recharged from portable solar cells in seven hours.
It's hard to know how genuinely practical the Morphcooker will actually be, but it could offer a better cooking solution that gas/biomass in windy or wet conditions. The Kickstarter campaign has already passed its goal with the early bird prices starting at US$96 for the smaller Solo model. Shipping is estimated for March 2018 if all goes to plan.
Take a look at the Morphcooker campaign video below.
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