DIY Solar Oven Follows the Sun

Your basic solar oven is a pretty basic DIY project involving, essentially, a cardboard box, a glass or Plexiglass panel and tinfoil. But if you’re looking for a slightly more sophisticated, not to mention durable version, you can check out plans for a solar oven that tracks the sun across the sky, developed by SolarPoweredGardener, on Instructables.

Rest assured, there are no elaborate electronics with numerous components and circuit boards; all you’ll need is a small battery, a couple of small solar panels, a motor and a switching device, along with the basics (wood, cardboard, nails, and glue).

Solar Oven with Tracking

image via Instructables

Using bearing and a Lazy-Susan-style base, this device both tilts and spins in accordance with the angle of the sun’s rays, powered by a small, solar powered motor. (The solar panels here are small, producing 3.3 volts of power in direct sunlight.) These panels are cross-wired to each other and placed on opposite sides of the oven, which means that which ever one getting more sun, the oven will turn in its direction, directing sunlight through a glass panel to cook the food within.

Mirrors are used to concentrate the sun’s rays, while cardboard provides insulation.

While all of this may sound complicated, it is, according to its creator, a simple way to cook food via solar power, faster.

Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.

    • Whoever tries it, please let me know if it works!