I was at work today, heating up my lunch (which I bring every day, thanks to my awesome wife) in the microwave when I got a moment of inspiration. To hopefully help this all make a bit more sense, let’s start with a little back history to explain the basis of the project you’re about to read about. Last summer I built a solar oven which worked…okay, I guess. We did cook a pot of beans in it one day so I guess it works well enough. I’ve been meaning to revamp it and have been thinking about that more and more lately, which is probably the reason for my lunchtime epiphany today.
My idea was to build a small solar oven to heat my lunch in. I sit in an office on the south west corner of the building so I get decent light in the window by the time I get to work. I spent some time tonight building my contraption and I must say, I think it turned out pretty well. It’s in prototype rough mode but I think it’s actually going to work. I used two old cardboard boxes, used tinfoil, duct tape (new, unfortunately), and a piece of plexi-glass I used for a water heating experiment last summer. It’s probably about one cubic foot of interior space. Here’s a picture –
I’m going to take it to work tomorrow and test it out. I’ll report on what I find tomorrow night.
If you’re so inclined, this would be a great project to do with kids. I just started with a small box, made sure it was deep enough for a container, the back of it was high enough to accomodate for a 30-45 degree angle, then just started putting it together. One note is that I did double layers of cardboard for insulation, otherwise it wouldn’t realize it’s full heat retention potential 🙂