Ever dreamed a late dinner cooked with solar power? It might just become real…
August 14, 2011 § 2 Comments
After spending some time in Nigeria, where people rely mostly on wood to cook their meals, which leads to all kind of respiratory illnesses as well as pollution, MIT professor David Wilson designed a solar cooker that stores the sun’s power in the form of a melted mineral salt which can then deliver the heat for 25 hours at a time with constant temperatures of above 450 degrees Fahrenheit, about 250 degrees Celsius. The sun’s radiation concentrator is a Fresnel Lens that heats a Sodium Nitrate container and melts the salt at high temperatures. This melted salt is preserved for delivering the heat at later times.
This great concept can become reality if the MIT students working on a prototype of Mr’s David Wilson project will find interest in such a product. Hopefully this will happen sooner rather than later.
I personally would love to have a version that can be fitted outside a kitchen window so it stores the heat of the sun and then it could be used to slow-cook different meals and when time is right can be used to prepare warm food for immediate use. Even in the winter this technology is capable of delivering great energy economies.
There are though some health concerns linked to sodium nitrate. It must be perfectly sealed inside the container. Any leach of this substance will make the design more dangerous than useful. Wikipedia warns that:
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