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The Simple Panel Cooker that Feeds Tens of Thousands Daily

November 24, 2017

Solar-cooking enthusiasts from a group called Solar Cookers International (SCI) joined with several engineers in 1994 to create a solar cooking device that would be both very inexpensive and highly portable.Their invention was called the CooKit. Their design was enthusiastically received and was soon introduced into refugee camps and impoverished populations in Africa and other parts of the world.1

The oven consists of a large reflector that sits underneath a cooking pot while also wrapping around the back and sides of the pot. The shape redirects the sun’s rays towards the pot, creating temperatures high enough to heat the pot and cook the contained food. Temperatures in this basic oven never get very high; the average is just over 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Still, it is an effective design that cooks similarly to an electric slow cooker, only using the free and available power of the sun.

The CooKit is incredibly lightweight and portable when collapsed and folded flat. Solar Cooker International is on a mission to ease the plight of impoverished people who either can’t afford cooking fuel or have to walk long distances to find and carry back fuel for a cooking fire.

Solar cooking has gained popularity in recent years because people are discovering the benefits of cooking with the sun instead of another fuel source. Many are realizing that other forms of fuel may not always be available in the way we are now used to in more developed countries. We can learn from those who currently rely on alternative cooking methods. The CooKit is a solar oven style that’s also commonly used throughout the United States, Europe, and other developed nations because of it’s small size and low cost. While it’s a wonderful option for these reasons, it isn’t the right tool for every family due to its slow cooking time. Those looking for faster cooking at higher temperatures may wish to invest the money in a higher quality, more reliable solution. A Sun Oven or a parabolic cooker may better suit the needs of these people. It’s important that you choose the right solar cooker for your needs.

SCI is an organization that was founded in 1987.2 It is dedicated to advocating on behalf of the solar cooking industry, educating people around the globe on the benefits of solar cooking, and assisting impoverished communities around the world by providing them with the ability to cook with the sun’s rays. Since inventing and promoting the CooKit oven, SCI has been actively training, innovating, and evangelizing in the area of solar cooking.

1.(2016, November 20). CooKit. Retrieved from http://solarcooking.wikia.com/wiki/CooKit

2.(2017, October 31). Solar Cookers International. Retrieved from http://solarcooking.wikia.com/wiki/Solar_Cookers_...