Hello and welcome again to Maggie’s Oven Services Blog. Today, as promised, i will explain you the basic idea behind solar ovens and the way they work. I’ll also give you simple tips on how to make one of these on your own.
Who needs solar cookers?
Let’s start with the reason why these devices were created at the first place.
There are areas in the world where electricity isn’t accessible for everybody. Think of all the poor people in Africa for instance. Some of them don’t even have clean water. These people need alternative methods to cook and boil water for drinking. Some of them live in the savannah and open fires are prohibited there. So, they needed effective solutions. A way to solve the issue – solar ovens. They can be used for cooking, warming water, boiling.
People like us, in richer countries can also benefit from solar ovens in times with power failures or during picnics.
What is solar powered oven? The basic idea and how do they work?
The device is pretty simple. It contains of heat reflecting chamber which is well isolated, several additional reflecting sheets to guide more heat into the chamber, heat resistant and isolating glass. The idea is to reflect as much sunlight into the chamber as possible and to keep it there. That sunlight is transformed into heat which cooks the food. Simple!
How to make a solar oven?
You need 2 big cardboard boxes; alumina foil; glue; scissors; several sheets of flexible, transparent plastic; old newspapers.
- Get the smaller cardboard box and glue the insights, including the four “wing areas” with alumina foil.
- Get the transparent plastic sheet and fix it on top. Make sure to fix it permanently only on one side, so you can open it easy.
- Insert the small box in the big one and fill the gap between them with small pieces of newspaper.
- Use rods or other supports to fix the “wings” on equal distance one from another and on precise angle from the ground.
- Now you need to put the pot inside, close the plastic on top and leave the for sheets of the box open. Take the solar furnace outside on the sun and wait for the meal to be prepared.
Tip: Before using the oven, make sure the whole inner side is well covered with alumina foil otherwise your oven may burst into flames.
Tip: even though it may not look like it, the inner side of the oven gets really hot, so do not underestimate the risk and use gloves when taking out the meal.
Tip: These don’t need cleaning as there are very little spills on them usually, but if your oven cooker needs cleaning after all, a well dampen with cleaning solution cleaning cloth and very little water should do the magic. If the oven is too grease, you can simply replace the old sheets of foil with new ones.
NB: Always make sure the transparent plastic cover to be clean. This is where the light and therefore the heat comes inside the oven. If it is dirty, you won’t be able to cook anything.
Of course, there are many ways to make a solar oven and each of them is different. For more information you can check here. However, the principle behind each and every of them is the same.