Impulse redefines luxury cooking

The Impulse Cooktop has state-of-the-art cooking performance and paves the way for a clean energy future. Impulse premiered the stove at the 2024 CES, where USA Today awarded it Best of What’s To Come 2024 in the Kitchen and Cooking category.
  1. Like with sous vide, a user can control temperature precisely. Unlike sous vide, the Impulse Cooktop can operate like a traditional stove to sauté, sear, and fry food.
  2. The Impulse Cooktop is more energy efficient than electric or gas stoves.
  3. The Impulse Cooktop heats up faster and is more controllable than gas.
  4. The Impulse Cooktop doesn’t create air pollution in the home.

Reaching product maturity in under 18 months

SOE and Impulse’s teams worked together both remotely and in person to:
  1. Collaboratively design and produce ten engineering prototypes*
  2. File a patent for a novel fast-response temperature sensor
  3. Develop a machine learning algorithm to predict temperature in cookware accurately
  4. Develop firmware to precisely control 10kW, which is 2-3x more power than gas or electric stoves, strong enough to boil a liter of water in 40 seconds
*Note: The pictured stoves are engineering units designed to prove performance. They do not match the final industrial design.

How induction cooking works

Below the stove’s cooking surface is a planar coil of copper wire. When an alternating electric current (represented by the blue spheres) is passed through the wire, an alternating magnetic field is formed (represented by the blue arcs). The magnetic field interacts with the metal in the frying pan to generate eddy currents.

Eddy currents create heat

The iron atoms in a steel pan align themselves with the magnetic field. As the field oscillates, the atoms’ continuous realignment creates friction, generating heat.

Custom temperature sensor

Imagine maintaining a steady temperature in your pan no matter what ingredients you add. For instance, after you add a cold steak to the pan, the stove dynamically resets the pan to the ideal doneness temperature. Impulse makes cooking more straightforward and predictable – no more burnt garlic. To deliver that user experience at the power level of this stove, a fast-acting, highly accurate temperature sensor was needed. Because this sensor didn’t exist, SOE developed a proprietary patent-pending one for Impulse.

Custom machine learning control algorithm

SOE used the stove and various pans’ thermal and magnetic material properties to build a predictive model, which was validated with experiments. The model was used to develop a custom algorithm that uses inputs from the sensor over time to:
  1. Predict the temperature
  2. Set the optimal induction power to heat the pan to the desired temperature

Custom machine learning control algorithm

SOE employed a physics-based approach to make a dynamical system model and controller, which supports real-time learning of the behavior of a range of pans.

Integrating everything

Mechanical Design and Assembly

SOE integrated and assembled components from 3 sources: Impulse designed, COTS components, and SOE designed.
Impulse designed the following (indicated in green):
  • Battery Systems
  • Embedded Systems
  • Power Electronics
  • Thermocouple Interface PCBA

Careful COTS

For parts of the prototype where custom design was not essential, SOE carefully chose commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) components (indicated in red) to decrease expenses and accelerate development.

SOE designed systems

(indicated in blue):
  • Cooling System
  • Custom Firmware
  • Custom Glass Cooktop
  • E-stop Safety System
  • Electrical Integrations
  • Harnessing
  • Industrial Grade Housing
  • Mechanical Integrations
  • Thermal Management System
  • Temperature Sensor System
  • User Interface Assembly

Testing the stovetop

The cooktop was designed and tested for high-temperature operation, impact resistance, water ingress, sensor mechanism verification and validation, and material compatibility with household cleaning compounds. Testing the cooktop also required the following:
  • Emulsifying hollandaise sauce
  • Tempering chocolate
  • Browning butter Caramel
  • Sous-viding and searing steaks
  • Deep-frying: chicken, jalapeño poppers, pickles, tater tots

Low-volume manufacturing

SOE constructed and tested ten prototype units in-house. By building these stoves internally, SOE mitigated risks associated with working with multiple vendors, monitored build progress, and could quickly pivot when necessary. The prototypes were used to:
  • Validate the physics of the sensor
  • Evaluate the performance of the integrated system
  • Showcase the product to potential partners and investors

Learn more

To learn more about Impulse and its cooktop, visit www.impulselabs.com or read the USA Today’s review “Best of What’s To Come 2024.”

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