Q: It seems to me that
grams/hour [the rating standard used in the US] doesn't make sense. The
grams/kilo burned [the rating standard used in Europe] makes more sense, but
still doesn't seem to tell us what we really need to know. Why not use
grams per btu? That would allow us to compare the amount of pollution
produced to the amount of heat produced.
grams/kilo burned rating standard might be a little more intuitive, but
is no more
accurate than the US grams/hour standard.
During wood stove emissions testing, the initial weight of the test "charge"
is recorded, and zero final weight (all fuel consumed) is used to define the
fire duration end point. What that creates is, the WEIGHT of the fuel consumed
and the duration of TIME it took for that to happen are equally valid benchmarks
for use in determining particulate emissions ratios.
let's look at a fictional stove that burns a 10 kilogram charge in 5 hours,
producing 20 grams of airborne particulates in the process.
In the US,
that model would score a 4 grams/hr rating (20 grams / 5 hours).
Europe, Australia and New Zealand, the same test results would be expressed as 2
grams/kilo (20 grams / 10 kilos).
As you can see, both rating techniques
express the same test results, and both provide a concise and easy-to-grasp
means to compare the emissions of one model to another.
That said, it is unfortunate that a single convention couldn't have been
agreed upon, as European manufacturers who want to sell their products in the US
must provide a grams/hr interpretation in their literature, and vice-versa.
Hey, how 'bout we approach both camps with your idea of converting to the
Rorick system (grams/btu)? A 10 kilo charge contains,
on average, 136,400 btus of extractable
heat energy, so a stove that burned 10 kilos and produced 20 grams of airborne
particulates would be rated at 0.000146628 grams/btu!
After further consideration, that number seems needlessly
cumbersome for publishing, comparison and comprehension purposes, don't you
To read the actual text of the wood stove
emissions regulations on the EPA's website,
To read a brief history of the EPA
wood stove emissions regulations, click here.
To view the EPA's list of wood stoves
that have passed emissions testing,
To read about our own real-world test of
the new clean-burning technology,
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