"designer" to help make exotic reflectors for unattended solar cooking.

I have been thinking about this idea for a while but there are so many options that  I took a while to pick one.  One idea was to have the 2 laser pointers on a turret like a microscope and move the model around underneath.
Before you discount it as rubbish, please look about 5 minutes into this video  And pause it at about 5min 50 to see the "tuba like horns"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSMzKg6fwJ8    HIs design was done by computer and in my view is way too complicated but I hope it opens peoples eyes to some of the failings of parabolic dishes for unattended solar cooking.
There ARE other options and they do not look anything like what we imagine.
I believe that people can design exotic fairly high efficiency solar cookers (with a range of cooking times)  using the method I show.
If anyone wants to help make the instructable more understandable, I can open it and make a collaboration.
Or I can credit people for their input.    Also, it is community commons so it is no longer my idea,
release and improve it anywhere you want.
I will be improving the instructable myself over the coming weeks but do not expect instant improvement.
The instructable is at https://www.instructables.com/id/Method-for-designing-reflectors-for-unattended-sol/
and I have attach a pic here to get people started (I will improve that picture too).

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gaiatechnician (author) 7 years ago
Just a note that I put 2 videos on youtube to further explain what I am trying to do here.
They are
It helps to watch the first one before seeing the second one.  (I think).
gaiatechnician (author)  gaiatechnician7 years ago
Thought I would give a progress update
http://solarcooking.wikia.com/wiki/Solar_design_T-Square is the new main page for the project and
http://solardesign.ning.com/photo/albums/solar-design-tsquare has the latest pictures.  I ended up using little mirrors for the models. I stuck them in cob. I did 3 models.  A 1 hour model, and a one shell 2 hour model  and a 2 shell 2 hour model. 2 shell models just  take too long for my patience and I abandoned it got finished.  I only did a half model on the other 2 hour one. (Ran out of little mirrors) and no more available in town!  I have one more model to make and that is it! Maybe someone will follow through.  This got the most response of any of my projects.  A scientist who wrote a book on solar concentrators said I should get students to investigate it.  I have not found too many students interested in low tech stuff in my life.  Do you know of anyone?
lemonie7 years ago
Do you not want one laser on an arc, to represent the movement of the sun?

gaiatechnician (author)  lemonie7 years ago
I think that would be a very good idea.
I am just not sure I could do it myself.
The point of the arc is where the 2 lasers come together in my little diagram.
If I was doing it, I would need some little hinge there.  Someone else with more skills could cut a curved race or path for the laser and just move the laser through the race.
If you do that, you end up having to do the "microscope thing" for focusing the circle center of your arc.
You probably need a little wire to locate it too.
I just  do not have not enough skills to do it that way.

This sort of thing would give you your sun-angles, you'd move the test-piece around under the arc.

gaiatechnician (author)  lemonie7 years ago
Thank you.  I hope to get a lot more done today.  I have a few protractors.
I will set up both pointers for 75 degrees.  One left one right.

I will label the laser pointer pictures in the forum above a bit better now.
Hopefully I can get them onto the t square and make my first demo model today.
I might have a few problems because the pointers do not stay on when I turn them on.
Yea, I have a dodgy-switch on mine.
But you'd want to consider the other angle - as the sun has altitude and azimuth. Unless you're modeling for the equator you don't want an altitude of 90o
But then, if you assume the collector will be angled towards the sun, you're taking that factor out in your test piece.

gaiatechnician (author)  lemonie7 years ago
One of the presumptions I have made is that the  reflector is set up on equatorial mount. 
This has to be the case with the design I have in mind. 
Because otherwise you cannot accurately line up the long axis of it with the path of the sun.
Equatorial mount might take a bit longer to set up but it has quite a few advantages.
I am uploading pictures now which will go some way towards explaining things further.
Thank you Brian
Ah yes I see it. You've got a cheap pointer and a more expensive one for attaching to a gun?

gaiatechnician (author)  lemonie7 years ago
I have 2 cheap pointers. They are both rubbish. Both lost their tops and I had to tape the battery compartment shut on the second one. They are exactly half inch diameter so I just drill a half inch hole in the wood and they fit really snugly,
The good thing is that clothes pegs are perfect to keep them turned on.
I was going to use  laser levels but they were too heavy. I am removing the laser level pic now.
Thank you for your interest. It kept me going.
I do not know where I will get suitable strips of material to make the reflector model. And I need to think of something to but up against the material to keep it in place too. Maybe tomorrow?
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