This terracotta chimney gives you the warmth of a fireplace in a small, sustainable package

Most fireplaces in older apartments have been decommissioned because of how much of a health hazard they are. However, it’s no secret that fire is one of the most effective ways to generate heat, whether it’s for cooking food or for keeping you warm. While the chances of you having a working fireplace in your home are near zero, the folks at NextNova have designed the next best thing – a terracotta heater that uses a unique airflow pattern to create a tower of fire that heats your home while also optionally distributing a fragrance of your choice.

Designer: NextNova

The Tornado combines the charm of a fireplace with the safety of, say, a scented candle. The terracotta-based heater relies on airflow, along with the thermal properties of baked clay to generate radiating heat for both the indoors as well as the outdoors. On the inside, it burns bioethanol using ceramic wool as a substrate, generating heat without any smoke, ash, harmful chemicals, or bad odors. This means you can use the Tornado inside your home without worrying about triggering the fire alarm!

The Tornado comes from the same folks that designed the Egloo, which we dubbed “the world’s most affordable thermostat” back in 2017. Significantly larger than the Egloo, it stands at 17 inches tall, with an internal chamber that creates a large fire vortex that generates much more heat than you would get from the Egloo. In fact, the makers claim it outputs 7000 BTU (British Thermal Units) of heat, allowing it to do the job of a miniature campfire in your room, heating things up without burning any electricity!

The Tornado gets its name from the uniquely tall flame it creates. Strategically placed openings in the sides of the vertical chamber channel air in to amplify the fire, creating a wind vortex that lifts the flame up to 5x higher than usual. This not only increases the Tornado’s heat production, it also makes for a rather alluring display on the front, allowing you to admire the rising flame in all its glory.

Metal components help absorb excess heat, preventing the terracotta shell from cracking.

Once the flame is roaring, it heats the terracotta shell, which then emanates warmth to heat your home. The Tornado’s designed to be used both indoors as well as outdoors, mimicking the effect of a fireplace without the hazards of smoke or a potential disaster. The flame is contained within the Tornado’s secure and stable design. Just remember not to touch it, because it gets pretty hot!

Aside from heating, the Tornado can be used to diffuse aromas too. Just add a few drops of an essential oil of your choice to the ceramic wool, and the heat causes aromatic compounds to enter the air, working the way a scented candle does!

The strategic openings also serve an important purpose in allowing you to light or extinguish your Tornado. The lighting process first starts by lifting up the top hood to reveal the heat-resistant ceramic tray inside, with ceramic wool substrate. Pour your bio-ethanol in before placing the hood back. The openings on the side then let you place a long-neck lighter in to light the fire, or a flame snuffer to extinguish the fire instantaneously.

The Tornado currently finished crowdfunding on Kickstarter, raising an impressive $88,485 from nearly 500 backers. The backers will now get to choose what color they want their Tornado in, ranging from the classic beige and orange, to even colors like white, blue, red, and black!