Solar Cookers World Network


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ASTRA - Agency for Solar Technology Research and Application was created in Ottawa, Canada on the 7th of March, 2001, ASTRA is a Corporation Without Share Capital (Not-for Profit) dedicated to the advancement of renewable energy use at all levels of society.

We are currently engaged in awareness raising about our newly developed Phaeton solar cooker which costs $500 and has a power rating of 2kw. We are seeking partners, sponsors, benefactors and anyone who believes they can help us to field test and popularize these cookers.

Section III of our Application for Incorporation reads:

The objects of the Corporation are:

  1. To conduct research and experimentation on production of renewable energy, with particular but not exclusive reference to solar energy, as a source of high-grade heat;
  2. To pursue numerous technical and scientific avenues toward a prime objective, namely, to achieve the lowest possible costs of energy-production hardware, consistent with standards of living.
  3. To develop energy-production hardware that is economical, functional, and simple enough to be within the financial and technical competence of rural and village entrepreneurs and domestic users in Third-World regions where sun and wind are plentiful;
  4. To develop production processes and technologies whereby the basic low-cost energy may be afforded economic values, e.g. by baking, cooking, roasting, parching, distillation, destructive distillation, thermo-chemical processes, ceramics burning and glazing, shaftpower production and a wide range of applications thereof, water sterilization, electricity production via multi-intensity photovoltaic cells, small-scale metallurgy and glass-making and moulding, and numerous related or additional applications of low-cost energy;
  5. To conduct pilot or demonstration projects in various developing-country environments: (a) of techniques for fabrication of basic energy-producing hardware; and (b) of various applications of low cost, renewable high-grade heat and low-cost mechanical energy.
  6. To foster and promote the formation of financial and marketing infrastructure at the village level, e.g. women's cooperative credit institutions, and to promote the funding thereof by international aid and financial institutions, so that capital may be readily available for the purchase of solar arrays;
  7. To foster and promote the involvement of Third-World faculties of engineering, social sciences, economics, and university and governmental extension services, in establishment of community infrastructure, evaluations of various types of enterprise, and counselling on various uses of solar and related technologies;
  8. To disseminate information re: the above, to rural people of developing countries, and to international development program administrators in both recipient and donor countries, and to entrepreneurs and investors in both industrial and developing countries.

Recent news and developments

  • ASTRA is pleased to annouce a cooperative project with Adesjo the Association for the Development of San Jose de Ocoa in the Dominican Republic. The project is set to begin in mid February and will involve training Adesjo personnel in the fabrication and maintenance of Solar Fire arrays and setting up the system in a disadvantaged mountain community. The desired result will be one Phaeton concentrator powering a baking oven, a dehydrator and a stovetop cooker, the intention being to evaluate potential strategies for small and medium enterprise development based on solar thermal energy.
  • In February 2012 Lorin Symington, Vice-President of ASTRA will fly to Port Au Prince, Haiti for a 2 week scouting expedition before heading to the Dominican Republic. After the Project with Adesjo, he will return to Haiti to develop and implement strategies for spreading the Solar Fire.

External links


See Lorin Symington.


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