- Residential and commercial cooktops (ranges)
- Commercial manufacturing
- Furnaces and water heaters without access to electricity
- Even heating
- Higher heat-transfer energy efficiency than available burners
- Ultralow emissions (NOx, CO) meet indoor air quality goals
- Unique, attractive flame patterns
- Enables easy-to-clean gas burners for cooktops
Berkeley Lab combustion experts Robert Cheng and Peter Therkelsen along with researcher and entrepreneur Michael Tucker have invented a cooktop burner that maximizes flame surface for exceptionally even heating. The burner stabilizes premixed (air / fuel) flames at low velocities to reduce NOx emissions by 90% and CO emissions by more than 50%. In addition, a hot box enclosure incorporated into the design minimizes heat loss from the burner for maximum energy efficiency.
The Berkeley Lab Burner is a low velocity, natural draft burner that concentrates combustion energy in a single reaction zone of an air-rich flame (see Figure 1). Unlike other premixed burners that require air blowers, this natural draft technology offers both improved energy efficiency and low pollutant emissions to residential and commercial cooking operations, without the need for electricity or fans. A cleanable, adjustable burner using this design yields a 25% shorter boil time while 1) reducing overall kitchen workspace heat load and 2) matching flame area to cooking surface for all shapes of pots and pans. The resulting, flame pattern stands apart from the conventional stovetop ring (Figure 2).
Current residential and commercial cooktop burners burn a fuel-rich flame with external secondary air required to complete combustion, resulting in high heat losses to ambient air and high emissions of NOx and CO, harmful indoor air pollutants. A California Energy Commission study reported NOx emissions from residential cooktops and oven burners range from approximately 70 ppm to 90 ppm, while the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) has set a NOx emission goal for indoor air at 18 ppm.
Figure 2. The Berkeley Lab Burner’s pattern is unique from the conventional ring of fire on gas cooktops (left).
STATUS: Published PCT Patent Application US2016/056301 (Publication No. WO2017/062963). Available for license or collaborative research.
DEVELOPMENT STAGE: Demonstrated in commercial, portable stoves.