Kuni - Universal Food Warmer
This project's is an individual project that test whether I can create social impact through sustainability design, which also means the demographics for my product would be broader, like globally instead of locally.
According to Drawdown.org, about 3 billion people around the world does not have access to clean cookstoves, and that they rely on solid fuel to cook. Solid fuel like Kerosene, coal and firewood are extremely harmful to the environment as it emits a lot of carbon dioxide and contributes to global warming and climate change.
Although I do not think I can stop the world from using solid fuel, I do believe they can stop themselves by using solid fuel excessively. My idea is to provide a device for them to reheat or keep food warm so they do not need to use solid fuel again to heat up their leftover food. I am mostly aiming for rural countries or developing countries that does not have a lot of clean energy. Even though this idea might sound unimportant, but I do think in the long run, it could save people from destroying the Earth too quickly until they all have access to clean energy and cookstoves.
After researching, I have determined that kinetic energy is the way to go for my solution since it is accessible and cheap. All I really need is a generator and a mechanism that integrates with my product. By using something like a hand crank or a foot pedal, a limited but certainly enough electricity can be produced for my food warmer.
By taking inspirations from toasters, I have implemented similar mechanism within my food warmer. The corded plug powers the nichrome wires which heats up according to the dial which controls how hot the user want it to be. Also, with the rack and the lid, food can be warmed up and reheated more thoroughly. All the user need to do to use this food warmer is to plug it to the kinetic generator or outlet there is.
As a system
With the kinetic generator, not only can it be the source to power the food warmer, but also other small electronic such as electric fan, radio, light bulbs and more. Furthermore, it can also act as a emergency product as it does not rely on any external source to store power especially with the light built in and multiple kinds of outlets as well as ports provided. So really what I designed is a multi purposed product. Also, if for whatever reason the food warmer or kinetic generator broke, it can be easily recycled or reused as something else. Otherwise, it can be repaired or remanufactured since I designed it to be made with common materials accessible to developing countries as well, so no high tech parts are involved.