SP0167: Solar Oven

Status: COMPLETED April 2017 - March 2018

The Solar Oven project will introduce the McGill community to alternative energies and demonstrate how to use solar energy to cook and preserve food. The project involves the purchase of a solar oven which will be located on Macdonald campus, that will be available for anyone in the McGill community to use to cook or preserve food. Once the purchased solar oven is built, a team will brainstorm ideas on how to develop two modified solar ovens. This project hopes to change the way the McGill community thinks about alternatives energies by creating a practical and accessible example. 

Read the full project description

While Mac campus has knowledge of environmental sciences and agriculture, there are very few examples of sustainable energy sources that can be used by students to demonstrate their efficiency. Students can study the existence of alternatives in theory but are missing the practical aspect. Having a solar oven would bring a practical energy source to our daily life. Bringing awareness of cooking alternatives such as solar ovens, which are ecologically-friendly and energy efficient, is essential for our future. 

Solar ovens – or solar panel ovens or solar cookers – turn direct sunlight into thermal energy to cook food. Solar cookers are sturdy boxes lined with reflective material to attract the sun's rays, and a lid to retain the heat, ensuring that the food is heated evenly. The ovens are moveable and will be built at the Mac Farm, near the MSEG site. The aim of the project is to bring awareness of the benefits of solar energy. Students and the youth from Ag-Connect will be invited to help in the construction of the solar ovens and will have the opportunity to learn how these overs can be constructed with minimal inputs at home. The construction of solar cookers is not only a project to address sustainable energy but also a project of a sustainable community way of life. 

This project envisions the creation of a community space where students can come and gather around the solar oven to cook and share knowledge and experiences, with the goal of bringing together various departments at Macdonald campus. 

Funds from the SPF will be used to purchase the solar oven and materials to build the two additional modified solar ovens, as well as oven maintenance. 

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