Electric ovens are not generally known for energy conservation. Researchers at England’s Cranfield University have built one that consumes 35 to 60 percent less electricity than those now available. Mechanical engineers Marcus Newborough and Bryan Shaughnessy lined the walls of the oven with a heat-reflecting aluminum alloy (photo). “About 93 percent of the radiation striking the chamber’s lining is directed back at the food being heated,” says Newborough. A second reflective lining between the cooking chamber and its outer insulation further prevents heat from escaping. The researchers are seeking partners to license the technology, which they expect to reach the market in about two years.
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