PCIA Training Opportunity: Assessing Stove Performance in the Field

To download this full announcement as a pdf file, please scroll to the end of this page.

Is your stove project ready to conduct the Controlled Cooking Test (CCT) or Kitchen Performance Test (KPT) to quantify the fuel use of your stove? The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), through contracts with Aprovecho Research Center and Berkeley Air Monitoring Group, will provide two Partner organizations support to conduct either the CCT or KPT to evaluate the field performance of their stove.

This current initiative builds on USEPA’s evaluation of stove performance in the laboratory and previous field testing in Nepal, India, Peru, Rwanda, Laos and Bangladesh. You can learn more about these past efforts at www.PCIAonline.org/proceedings. The primary objective of this capacity building initiative is to assist Partner organizations to obtain field data on fuel use to inform and improve stove design, performance and use. In some cases, we will also assess emissions, including both health and climate-related pollutants.

This initiative consists of a stove testing workshop in which several local organizations will be invited to participate and a field study for the selected Partner organization. This is the first in a series of field stove performance testing opportunities. The first round of CCT and KPT trainings/field studies will take place between June and August 2012. We will advertise separately for future field stove testing to be conducted in fall 2012 and winter 2013.

Controlled Cooking Test

The CCT is a field test that measures stove performance in comparison to traditional cooking methods when a cook prepares a local meal. The CCT is designed to assess stove performance in a controlled setting using local fuels, pots, and practice. It reveals what is possible in households under ideal conditions, but not necessarily what is actually achieved by households during daily use.

The CCT training will be conducted by Aprovecho Research Center in a very interactive and collaborative manner involving presentations, discussions, hands-on stove design modification and testing, data analysis exercises, and qualitative/survey exercises with cooks and stoves in the field.

The Aprovecho team will continue to provide technical assistance to the selected Partner organization after the training and field study by e-mail, telephone and Skype. By the end of the technical assistance phase, the selected organization will have the capacity to conduct stove performance testing, perform the necessary data analysis and make design modifications which improve their stove’s performance, safety and durability.

The following is a sample CCT work plan, which will be updated and finalized with the selected organization:

  • Step 1: Training to conduct CCT
  • Step 2: Conduct CCT
  • Step 3: Stove design review and modifications
  • Step 4: Training and support to conduct further testing, analyze data and write report

Kitchen Performance Test

The KPT is a field test designed to measure daily household fuel consumption in real-world settings. The support provided by this project may also assist the Partner organization in producing fuel consumption estimates for application for carbon offsets, including CDM, Gold Standard, and other methodologies.

The KPT training will be conducted by Berkeley Air Monitoring Group in a very interactive and collaborative manner. Trainings will involve presentations, discussions, quantitative exercises (in Microsoft Excel), qualitative/survey exercises, roll playing, and practice visits to households that are not part of the KPT sample.

If requested by the Partner organization, Berkeley Air will provide guidance in selecting a qualified KPT field team, from within or outside of the organization, who will participate in the training. The KPT field team should include one Field Supervisor from the Partner organization and several Field Surveyors. The Field Supervisor will be the primary contact with the Berkeley Air team throughout the project.

We will complete a Kitchen Performance Test with a sample size of approximately 40 to 60 households over the course of about 15 working days. The Berkeley Air lead trainer will remain with the Partner through the completion of the KPT field effort. Berkeley Air will provide the Partner with calibrated, high-accuracy, digital weighing scales and certified weights (for daily calibration) for use in the KPT. Working with the Partner’s field supervisor, the lead trainer will oversee KPT data collection, entry, analysis, and management during the field visit.

The following is a sample KPT work plan, which will be updated and finalized with the selected Partner organization:

  • Step 1: Household selection (coordinated in advance by Partner, with support from Berkeley Air)
  • Step 2: Training to conduct KPT
  • Step 3: Perform baseline (traditional scenario) fuel use measurements
  • Step 4: Perform project (new stove scenario) fuel use measurements
  • Step 5: Training and support to analyze data and write report

The Berkeley Air team will continue to provide technical assistance to the Partner after the field visit. Their team will remain in contact with the Partner’s Field Supervisor via telephone, Skype, email, and possibly in-person meetings. The technical assistance will continue at least until a final report or article is completed. By the end of the technical assistance phase, the organization will have the capacity to lead a KPT field effort, perform the necessary data analysis, and write a final report.

You can download the stove test protocols at www.PCIAonline.org/testing.

Selection Criteria

In order to make the most of this training and technical assistance opportunity, potential Partner organizations must demonstrate that they are ready to undertake a field assessment of stove performance and that they have a stove that performs well and is widely accepted.

Applicants are asked to demonstrate the following capabilities in the online application form:

    1. Applicant is an active PCIA Partner as demonstrated by the following: submission of 2011 results report, participation in PCIA Forums and events, submission of content for the PCIA Bulletin, and having a recently updated PCIA Partner Profile.

    2. Applicant has quantified stove performance under controlled conditions as demonstrated by providing the results of the Water Boiling Test (WBT) or comparable test, along with test details including the testing organization, the number of tests/replicates, and other test conditions. The quality and extent of the WBT test results will be a part of the selection criteria. Submission of additional information on stove performance and usage is advised and may include the following:
    a. Controlled Cooking Tests
    b. Pilot fuel consumption estimates
    c. Other performance tests

    3. Applicant can demonstrate successful community acceptance or adoption of stoves. Please provide:
    a. Current estimate of successfully adopted stoves.
    b. Results from stove usage/acceptance surveys and questionnaires.
    c. Description of stove user training (e.g., user instructions, product guarantees, follow-up procedures.

    4. Applicant can demonstrate high quality manufacturing process in which each stove produced meets design specifications. Please describe the stove materials and parts, the manufacturing process, and quality control and assurance procedures. Please provide pictures of the stove as well.

    5. Applicant has sufficient staff and financial resources to implement the testing plan (see below), and sufficient computer and language skills to fully participate in the training. Please provide a capacity statement describing staff (including information on computing skills and English proficiency), infrastructure, and major funding sources.

Bonus Criteria: Special consideration will be given to applicants who propose to partner with a Regional Stove Testing Center, university or other organization who exhibits the potential to use the knowledge gained from this consultancy to conduct future field studies in the region.


USEPA will pay for all costs associated with the training and technical assistance provided by Berkeley Air Monitoring Group or Aprovecho Research Center, including their time, travel, per diem, and monitoring equipment.

Winrock International will pay for food costs and any venue and materials costs for the workshop. The selected Partner organizations will be responsible for helping Winrock International to organize a 3-4 day training workshop for other local Partner organizations, led by Berkeley Air Monitoring Group or Aprovecho Research Center. The selected Partner organizations will help Winrock identify a nearby low-cost room/venue, and arrange lunch and morning/afternoon refreshments for the participants, who will otherwise cover their own costs.

The selected Partner organizations will be responsible for all costs associated with their staff participation in the training and the implementation of the CCT or KPT field study, including salaries, per diem, lodging, telecommunications, local transportation for the entire field team, and translation to/from English if required. The Partner organization will need computers with Microsoft Excel and Word.

The training will be conducted in English. The selected Partner organizations are responsible for ensuring the English proficiency of the participants and/or for providing translation from English to/from the local language. Given the technical nature of the training and field study this is a critical factor for success.

Results of the Controlled Cooking and Kitchen Performance Tests performed under this agreement will be published in peer reviewed journals and through USEPA communication channels such as webinars and written reports.

Applications are due by April 30, 2012, and must be submitted online at www.PCIAonline.org/content/application-CCT-KPT-Field-Testing. Please contact us at moderator@PCIAonline.org with any questions.

The pdf version of this announcement is attached below.

CCT-KPT-Field-Testing-Announcement.pdf105.91 KB