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MIT Solar Grill

by Brad

In the August 2011 newsletter of Solar Cookers International, I was struck by a photo of an African woman cooking on a "solar grill", designed by MIT students.

Unfortunately, this photograph is photo-shopped and no grill yet exists. The MIT students are merely conceptualizing the marketing and design of a product, destined to make the lithium mining industry very happy, if the design is adopted and subsidized.

Solar Grill Prototype

I am disappointed that SCI did not point out the fact that the photo is photo-shopped, and like the flying cars of the 1950's, merely an exercise in wasting the creative energy of promising engineering students.

There are hundreds of exceptional solar cooking designs, which are lightweight, versatile, and made with common construction materials. How solar cooking made the leap from common sense, to an over-the-top technology project like this, made my head spin.

Anyone else see this concept product, and feel likewise?


I totally agree with you on this.
It is not very practical for everyday "real world" and especially third world application.

To a certain extent, I even feel that "tracking" devices add to much expense and complication to such a simple and effective energy use as is the principle of solar cooking. Most people can do very well at solar cooking with just the basics.

I think you are right on.


Comments for MIT Solar Grill

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Jan 23, 2015
by: Anonymous

Damn its a pity it is not real I will be able to sell those in the blink of an eye at the right price

Jun 02, 2014
mit grill
by: Mark Rosenberg

Sounds like a great idea but does it work? Not to mention what the price would be. Too hard to market in my opinion.

Mar 25, 2014
by: Anonymous

Does anyone have a PRICE for this Unit??



Feb 09, 2014
Solar cooker= Electricity?
by: Charlie Hernandez

Dear Friends,
I am glad to see so much enthusiasm for the Solar cooker mentioned in the SCI article and for all the Solar cooking applications that have been previously mentioned.

I would very much like to ask our global community.....has anyone come up with a Solar Cooker that with it's latent properties could use the heat to create ELECTRICITY?

Please let me know. Thanks.

Feb 07, 2014
Solar cookers
by: Ramo Buta

I Build a solar cooker that you can cook for coffee on the morning from the stored heat. I just looking for sponsor to build it in mass production.

You compare the two pictures posted and I del to be cheated, witch one is the original photo?

Feb 06, 2014
There were no mis-intentions
by: Scot

I'm a former MIT student and I know Prof. Wilson personally, however, I was not involved in the aforementioned project.

I do want to share the facts: Prof. Wilson has not tried to mislead anyone, and this solar grill design is something he indeed came up with and recruiting graduate students to help him research (as happens in academia).

In this case, students from the business school worked on market research and marketing, and a journalist picked up the images and story, blowing it out of proportion and also misleading people at the same time.

It's unfortunate so much criticism is wrongly directed toward Prof. Wilson and this project, still ongoing today. His heart and intentions are in the right place and I ask that you please reconsider before placing blame unknowingly.

Jul 03, 2013
MIT Solar cooker
by: Margie Knapp

Good to know...I thought it was real until Jim enlightened me on it. Thanks!

Jul 03, 2013
by: Anonymous

May 27, 2012
more fake solar products
by: lunatrope

Allegedly designed by "MIT students" and to go on sale by MIT Professor Dave Wilson???? ...only it doesn't exist... and is not a feasible design. That sounds like a lie in more ways than one.

Is someone trying to make solar products look like a bunch of shysters? Or, students getting back at their prof for stealing their ideas?
This would be how.

Jan 17, 2012
by: Jim La Joie

The very obvious design flaw is; how a collector of equal size to the target can possibly concentrate the light?
This article was, at best, a distraction. At worst, misleading novice solar cooks regarding the physics of solar cooking.

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