Hi, we happen to have found a (crazy) new way for solar cooking/grilling when tinkering with a portable Grill.
For getting to high temperature very fast a big parabolic mirror is needed, the bigger the mirror the higher the power. Disadvantage: it is very big, very heavy and not portable.
Our discovery: expanding upon NASA experiments we have made an *inflatable* mirror - this let you have a big powerful mirror, that is lightweight and fits into a backpack... high-powered Solar BBQ at camping and picnic is totally possible
What do you think?
How a PhotonGrill Works:
A mirror reflects the sunlight's Photons in its focus. A grill pan/pot is put on to the focus point and light energy gets instantly converted into heat. The mirror is inflatable as this makes it possible to transport the BBQ and it also makes it light weight.
The advantage: No more waiting to heat up, and no more fuel, fire, CO2, carcinogenic coal smoke, ash and dirt.
I have more details on the website my friends created but the technical details may bore you to sleep
The photongrill is a nice use of inflatable mirror, I'd also be interested in an inflatable mirror that could double or triple the effective surface area of solar panels or evacuated tube water heaters. I've toyed with the idea of using cheap reflective stick on mirrors, but they require the bulk and construction of a surface to be stuck to.
The grill is inflatable as it allows the user to fold the grill into nice portable size when deflated and when inflated forms the dish shape needed to focus the sun's photons. Thus, without being inflated into a mirror shape you wouldn't be abel to focus the sun's rays.
Rose : When many mirrors are joined together to make one Concentrating reflector, like this one (count the individual mirrors !) a very minor
fraction of a degree miss-alignment will cause a shift in the aiming point of any of the components.
This will greatly reduce or change the point of maximum concentration of the sunlight, reducing its effectiveness!
The best benefit of an inflatable unit is reproducibility, being able to get maximum concentration at a specific Aiming point every time !
Hope this helps and is timely ! For the Good of the Crafts ! Big AL
Success has a Thousand Fathers , Failure is an Orphan
LOOK AT THE " SIMILAR THREADS " BELOW !
posted 3 years ago
Hi Big AL!
Thanks for your feedback! You are correct, it is indeed crucial to position each and every mirror right in its exact place for the best geometry! We did a lot of research and testings in oder to get the optimum shape.
Now, after a looooong and complex development process we engineered a simple yet highly precise production process. For producing the mirror assembly we have used different very precise machines and tools, including laser cutting and thermal plastic deformation.
Once the mirror is produced, you simply have to inflate it and it will always get its pre-formed shape. The amount of pressure inside the mirror does not significantly change the shape or the focal length, as we are using (almost) non-elastic foils.
So even though the production process is sophisticated, the application itself for the user is as easy as inflating an air matress. It was one of our main goals during development stage transforming this high-tech principle into a convenient and simple product so literally everybody is able to use it.
Thanks again for passing on that info. Without feed back like that we wouldn't be as far along in our development!
Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
A question would be what about life expectancy, usability long term what are the expectations? Although no like for like comparison, anyone ever bought an inflatable chair or bed only for a great design to be let down a few months later with poor quality workmanship. And then once have found that air leak its then impossible to repair at least from off the shelf bicycle puncture repair kit.
Also how does the soft plastic handle hot fats splashed upon its surface?