See also Calendar of events
News and Recent Developments
- September 2013: In July, Austarlian solar cooking enthusiats in Brisbane, Queensland hosted Portugeuese solar cooking authority Profeessor Celestino Ruivo. A winter solar cookout - possibly the biggest gathering of solar cooking ever in Australia - held at the home of Stan and Jane Cajdler, was attended by more than 70 enthusiasts with 25 solar cookers. Prof. Ruivo demonstrated his Celestino Solar Funnel Cooker.
- November 2012: Solar Food Dehydrator - Stan Cajdler of Brisbane, Australia has developed a solar food dehydrator, which significantly reduces the formation of mold spores caused by the nightly cooling of food. Typically, the drying process can last for several days for sucessful solar food drying. In this design several water containers (for thermal mass) are positioned in the lower chamber of the dehydrator. As the collector plate heats up, it heats up the surrounding air, which rises through the drying chamber. During the day, radiant heat from the collection plates also heats the water containers, which slowly release heat overnight. This overnight thermal air movement through the upper chamber dramatically reduces the formation of mold spores. For more information on Stan’s solar cooker designs check out: Sizzling Solar Systems
- November 2012: - Heather Stevens of Sun Cooking Australia writes that it’s a great time for Australian companies to invest in solar cooking. The Australian Government has three significant grants available for companies looking to develop or promote environmentally friendly products or services. The Clean Technology innovation program uses Australian Carbon Trading funds, which allow the federal Government to offer matching funding for the development of new environmentally friend products. Stevens said that, “the high upfront costs of commercialization can put off inventors but with these grants the burden is shared by the government”. Steven’s SunRocket portable solar kettle, a grant applicant, uses a Vycor vacuum tube boosted by highly reflective panels to heat water and cook food. It holds 500ml (17oz) and weighs 1kg (2.2lbs) when empty. Another funding opportunity for Australian solar cookers is the Export Market Developing Grant (EMDG), which provides matching funding for any export related costs, including inviting potential clients to Australia to showcase a company’s products.
- November 2012: “Anywhere under the Sun” is a recently released solar cooking eBook featuring recipes from around the world. Heather Stevens, Australian solar enthusiast and editor of the book invited solar chefs from around the world to submit their favorite recipe, photos and comments on solar cooking. The book is a visually stunning and comphrehensive, with recipes from around the world. The book can be downloaded as an eBook for $1.99(AUD) from http://www.thesunskitchen.com. 100% of the sale price is donated to Solar Cookers International to assist with their work encouraging solar cooking in the developing world.
- September 20, 2008: Alice Springs, located in central Australia, will host its second annual Solar Oven Bakeoff on September 20, 2008, as part of the Alice Desert Festival at the Olive Pink Botanic Garden. All are welcome to join in the fun and compete for the Green Spoon Trophy. Oven design and use of local bush foods are two of the award categories. Last year’s recipes included an Australian Quandong dish and a cacciatore. Respected food writer and cook Stephanie Alexander is among the judges. Alice Springs has on average 300 sunny days per year, and recently became one of five communities participating in the government’s Solar Cities program. For more information, contact Kat Taylor.
- August 23, 2008: Learn to make and cook in your own solar oven out of recycled and new materials, including bits from old solar hot water systems. http://ee4s-ca.blogspot.com/2008/07/making-solar-ovens-out-of-old-hot-water.html
Climate, Culture, and Special Considerations
The average Australian home produces 500 kilograms of greenhouse gases a year through cooking, says the federal environment department. That is less than lighting (750 kilograms), and heating and cooling (1.5 tonnes), but it is still a fair old weight.
Articles in the media
- August 2013: Less is More: Baked in Sunshine - NewCastle Herald
- Earth Garden Spring 2011: Solar Cooking . A 4 page feature on solar cooking including recipes and design tips. Features the SunCook solar oven by Sun Cooking Australia
- August 2011. ReNew magazine, Issue 116 one of the most respected magazine on renewable energy (published by the Alternative Technology Association www.ata.org.au ) reviewed the SunRocket solar kettle
- March 2011: Cruising Helmsmen - Australia's largest yachting magazine had a detailed review of the SunCook solar oven and how well suited it is to the sailing life.
- Februray 2011: Warming to solar oven cooking . A great article on the SunCook solar oven in Newcastle, NSW
- February 28, 2010: Green approach attracts crowds to Corinbank . ABC canberra, a video on the Corin Bank festival that features solar cooking
- October 2010: Solar cooking hottest new idea on the Central Coast - ABC Central Coast NSW
- June 2008: How should I cook? - The Sydney Morning Herald
Audio and video
|April 2007: Video showing the Solar Oven Workshop with many different models created by students for Engineers Without Borders - Australia|