Induction cooking heats up with a $20M cash injection for Impulse

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Brilliant! Also allows cooking during a power outage, for a while anyway.

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“Induction stovetops take a lot of power, however — they can pull 40 amps at 240 volts. That’s the same as an at-home Level 2 EV charger.”

I don’t get why induction cooktop need a lot of power. Are people getting greedy and want super powerful stoves? Electricity energy efficiency of an induction cooktop cannot be worse than electric coils. Shouldn’t induction use less energy?

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I don’t hear the saying, “A watched pot never boils” much anymore. I’ll settle for no less than 3500W on the big burner, thank you.


Induction makes much more efficient use of the energy it uses. An induction stove’s energy goes to moving a lot of current through a big spinning magnet, which makes a magnetic field which causes current in the metal of the cooking vessel itself to heats up. No heat getting dumped into the air surrounding the vessel or to the space between the vessel and the magnet.

But it still requires a LOT of current to generate that sort of heat. Less in total energy than the equivalent gas burner is all.

This engineer with a Phd in electrical engineering refutes two of your claims: less total energy and magnets.

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Batteries in your appliances? What could possibly go wrong?

Every ton of lithium ore requires 15 tons of CO2 be emitted in just the mining. Then there’s the chemical and heat treatments in refining (the only practical way to heat process is burning fossil fuels). To add insult to injury, 77% of the world’s lithium batteries are made in China–which burns coal for the heat process (2.5x the emissions of natural gas). Not to mention financing the inevitable invasion of Taiwan…

IMO, the only real advantage of this idea is avoiding rewiring the few American homes that can’t/won’t put in a 40-amp service. But consuming electricity from the source will always be most efficient.

It’s also mostly a solution in search of a problem: The vast majority of home cooking tasks can be and are done with <40 amps; most PICs are plenty powerful at 110V/15A.

Oh, there are hysteresis and eddy current losses, to the tune of at least 10%. And there are also losses through the glass into the interstices–that’s why even the cheapest, low-power PICs must have active ventilation.

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