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Portable camping stove charges gadgets

By converting heat from the fire into usable electricity, the stoves recharge smartphones, lights, and other gadgets while you cook your hot dogs and baked beans.

Charge up while you reflect on life by the lake. BioLite
Boiling water and charging like a boss. BioLite

Charging gadgets out in the wilderness is a challenge, but the BioLite CampStove could change that for the power-hungry. This 2-pound portable device features a USB port that can power or charge devices while you burn biomass.

So how does it work? Well, the thermal energy of the fire delivers power to fans inside the stove through a thermoelectric module. These fans blow air on the fire to improve combustion, which in turn creates excess energy. A USB port delivers the extra energy generated by the fire for charging devices such as smartphones, LED lights, or GPS units.

The efficient design is perfect for the green geek: It greatly reduces smoke and therefore creates a minimal carbon footprint. It's also a neat option for those who invest in survival gear.

The CampStove folds into an 8.25 inch by 5 inch package, and its creators say its "quick to light, fast to boil and clean to use."

Recommended ingredients for charging via campfire include things such as sticks, pinecones, and other natural materials (including animal waste). The BioLite CampStove is available for preorder ($129) with an expected summer release.