High Efficient Oven (HEO)

Whirlpool Corporation technologies
INTRODUCTION

The Highly Efficient Oven (HEO), showcases a mix of environmental friendly technologies for manufacturing a new class of domestic electric ovens using up to 50% less energy in the production process, avoiding use of toxic substances and with an improved efficiency of about 30% during the use phase, if compared to state-of the art ovens.
The project was awarded by the European Union during the 2016 Green Week thanks to its eco-friendly, energy efficient sol-gel enameling process. The initiative received the Best of the Best Project Award within the 25 "Best" LIFE Environment projects.

SOLUTION DESCRIPTION

The first environmental aspect targeted by HEO is related to the energy consumption in the cavity production process. In the typical enamel process the low carbon steel is cured at 830°C to apply the traditional enamel. In the innovative HEO process, demonstrated through a pre-industrial production line, the stainless steel is cured twice at about 230°C for 30 minutes to apply the new coating, allowing saving up to 63% in terms of energy.
The saving in the thermal energy also compensates the higher embodied energy of stainless steel versus low carbon steel. This new coating is also avoiding the use of toxic substances, such as nickel and cobalt.
Additionally the project was targeting an energy consumption reduction during normal use of the oven. Traditional ovens are among the most inefficient appliances with an energy efficiency of around 10-12% with respect to the input power. The new concept applied to HEO project is taking the energy efficiency of the innovative oven up to a 30% higher than traditional ovens, mainly thanks to the increase of radiation contribution of the cavity wall to the total heat exchange with food and to the adaption of the heating system.
Therefore an improvement of the energy efficiency in household appliances’ energy requirements will have a very high impact on the EU area from a socio-economic as well as carbon footprint point of view.

BENEFITS

The main benefits that HEO brings are:

  • 63% energy saving of the pre-production pilot line with respect to state-of-the-art enamel plants as results of tests and trials.
  • Confirmation of an effective ≈30% energy saving, as result on the tests on the cavities. (Based on European products and according to EN 50304:60350 (2009) )
  • Energy to cook standard food evaluated on average 20% less in comparison to a black enameled cavity.
  • The new coating avoids the use of toxic substances, such as nickel and cobalt contained in standard enameling.
  • HEO requires far less cleaning chemicals with respect to the state-of-the-art enamels ovens.

Insights