Kanthal, part of the Sandvik group, has created an oven that is able to fully bake pizza in just 37 seconds. The record-breaking pizza oven uses electromagnetic radiation to heat up the oven’s contents and its compact element-design, often referred to as porcupine elements, makes it possible to pack a large amount of power into a small space. Each of these elements runs at a temperature of 900°C.
While electric heating demonstrates clear benefits for applications such as aluminium and steel processing, Kanthal, a heating and technology expert part of the Sandvik Group, has discovered one of its more unlikely uses. Advanced heating technology was used in a bespoke oven that can cook a pizza in a record-breaking 37 seconds.
In a typical home oven, a pizza will cook in around 10 minutes at a temperature of 200°C. At a traditional pizzeria, a wood-fired oven can bake a Neapolitan pizza in as little as 90 seconds, at around 430°C. However, a wood-fired oven is typically heated once during the firing stage and temperature is difficult to control.
In addition to the elements themselves, the oven also features several reflectors to aid the even distribution of heat and ensure a uniform bake.
Kanthal AF is typically used in electric heating elements in industrial furnaces and home appliances, such as in open mica elements for toasters, suspended coil elements in fan heaters and in coils on molded ceramic fiber for cooking plates with ceramic hobs. In these settings, the alloy operates in temperatures up to 1,300°C.
While Kanthal’s oven delivers an unbeatable cooking time, taste was an equally important factor. In partnership with Oskar Montano, co-owner of renowned pizza restaurant 800° in Stockholm, Sweden and a leading Neapolitan pizza specialist, Kanthal R&D engineer Björn Holmstedt, achieved culinary success.
“I always enjoy a challenge and, knowing that heat plays such a crucial part in pizza making, I saw this experiment as a perfect match for Kanthal,” Holmstedt says.
“Because our heating technology can produce heat up to 1,850°C, hitting a high temperature wasn’t an issue. However, pizza making is a precise craft that requires care to get the perfect crust, so we needed to take full advantage of our technology to provide a high temperature that we could easily control. Pizza ovens are not part of our portfolio, yet it was important for us to showcase everything that advanced heating technology can achieve,” Holmstedt concluded.