Creating a low-cost, low-particulate emissions corn cob charcoal grinder for use in Peru
Author(s)Thomas, Ashley Elizabeth
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Mechanical Engineering.
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Indoor air pollution is a serious health risk in developing countries, and is the leading cause of death for children under five. By replacing traditional cooking fuels with charcoal, one can significantly reduce a user's exposure to the particulate matter responsible for the detrimental health effects. The MIT D-Lab has have developed a method of creating charcoal using agriculture wastes such as bagasse and corncobs. However, it has been found that corncob charcoal produces dangerously high levels of carbon monoxide and as a result is unable to be burned directly and must be briquetted. In conjunction with this, an organization in Lima, Peru called Enlace Solidario makes coal briquettes in a configuration that optimizes the burning performance. They have entered in a partnership with the nearby orphanage of Segrada Familia to produce cooking fuel at no cost. However, Segrada Familia must supply their own ground charcoal to be briquetted. Thus, there is a clear need for a charcoal grinding machine. This thesis developed a successful grinding mechanism based on a peanut sheller design developed by the Full Belly Project. Though it needs to be scaled up to achieve the required throughput, this mechanism successfully limits the user's exposure to charcoal dust created during the grinding process and provides a means to produce corn cob powder necessary to briquette charcoal.
Thesis (S.B.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, 2008.Includes bibliographical references (leaf 35).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Mechanical Engineering
Massachusetts Institute of Technology