Solar Kettle allows for boiling water off the grid

May 23, 2013 by Bob Yirka weblog

(Phys.org) —A company called Contemporary Energy has unveiled a new device it calls the Solar Kettle. It looks very much like a normal coffee thermos, but has flaps on one side that open to allow for collecting solar energy, thus heating whatever is held inside. The company will be marketing the device to campers and others that need a way to boil water when electricity is not available.

The Solar Kettle looks very much like a normal thermos when not in use, though it's heavier—2.6 pounds when empty, compared to about a half pound for a normal thermos. It looks markedly different however when heating a liquid. The flaps open and direct the sun's energy to the vacuum sealed thermos. The device comes with a stand as well to allow for unattended heating. It typically takes about two hours to heat to boiling. The Kettle can also be used to brew tea, melt snow or to boil water to make it safe to drink. And if the need arises, it can even be used to desalinate .

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Devices that can make tainted water safe to drink have become increasingly popular as have spread the word about the risks posed to people around the world who don't have access to clean drinking water. While the Solar Kettle is not directed towards such end users, it's clear it could very easily be used for that purpose. The device holds 17 ounces of liquid, which is enough to make three cups of tea. That means it's capable of providing enough safe drinking water for one person, indefinitely. Of course that only applies on days when the sun is shining.

Reps for the new device point out that their Solar Kettle can also be used to heat soup, or even to boil . That makes it ideal, they say, for hikers, campers or anyone else who wants to boil water without going to the trouble of setting up a campfire. They note also that the exterior of the device remains cool to the touch during heating, preventing users from getting burned—and because it's heavily insulated, water once heated, will remain that way for several hours.

Explore further: A more efficient, lightweight and low-cost organic solar cell

More information: contemporaryenergy.co.uk/solarkettle.htm#details

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User comments : 10

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Aryeh_Z
3 / 5 (2) May 23, 2013
Nice.
Bogey
5 / 5 (1) May 23, 2013
Rice?
VendicarE
5 / 5 (2) May 23, 2013
Such devices are sold all over the world for producing domestic hot water for home use.

Typically a dozen 6 foot tubes of similar design have one end supported in a frame, and the top end held against a well insulated 40 gallon tank.
CreepyD
3 / 5 (2) May 24, 2013
Nice, but I see it more useful for filtering and desalinating than for camping.
This kind of device could be a life saver if every lifeboat carried one.
Sanescience
3 / 5 (2) May 24, 2013
Ha! I've got something similar on my roof (as mentioned by Vendicar)

I proposed something similar for the Google 10 to the 100 project except as a cooking plate that folds into a clam shell like carry case that could reduce the need to find cooking fuel in impoverished regions and would have a lid and hose adapter for boiling water and condensing it into drinking water.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (1) May 25, 2013
Typically a dozen 6 foot tubes of similar design have one end supported in a frame, and the top end held against a well insulated 40 gallon tank.

That seems like a rather large setup to go camping/hiking with.
tscati
5 / 5 (1) May 26, 2013
Two hours to make a cup of tea? Perhaps a slight redesign is needed to increase the area of the concentrator (like, ten-fold)
Humpty
1.8 / 5 (5) May 27, 2013
Hello Stupid American. You are 5% of the worlds population and only country to still use imperial.

95% of worlds population only uses metric.

Please no using fluid juisims in measurements - only litres.
GraemeMcRae
not rated yet May 27, 2013
Humpty, are you part of the 5% of the world who doesn't use computers? If not, google this: https://www.googl...14,d.aWc
Guy_Underbridge
not rated yet May 27, 2013
The linked article at Contemporary Energy (UK) used metric. I'm thinking Bob doesn't want to send some of the readers into units-conversion shock syndrome.