How Does a Solar Cooker Work?

Solar cooker
  • 1-100 hours
  • Beginner
  • 0-1,500

Solar cookers are solar powered, which means the energy required to work them is generated from the sun rather than through standard electricity. Solar power is an eco-friendly option as well as a cost saver. Energy sourced from the sun is free. Solar-powered devices are fitted with solar panels that collect energy. Once the panels are charged, the device will work just as if it were plugged into an electrical outlet. However, solar cookers need constant contact with the sun to work effectively.

Solar Powered Cookers

Solar cookers are used outdoors because they depend on sunlight to maintain a constant heat. As the sun moves, it is necessary to move the cooker so it's always in direct sunlight. Shadows can reduce the temperature of the cooker, and solar cookers don't hold their heat in the same way a barbecue can. Constant energy is the key to keeping a solar cooker working to its full capacity.

Creating Heat

Solar cookers work in a few ways, either by concentrating the sunlight and then dispersing the heat, or by trapping and circulating the heat like in a Dutch oven. For this method, you need a transparent cover so the sun can penetrate through the top.

Another method is where the light is converted to heat. These cookers are usually blackened out. As black conducts heat, this method regulates heat adequately.