Solar Lens From TV





Introduction: Solar Lens From TV

This Instructable is about a lens out of an old TV that I found in a thrift store. I have seen Instructables like this on line and wanted to test it out. It works very well.

Step 1:

I found a TV lens in a thrift store and an old quilting frame in another one. used some duct tape to hold it on.

Step 2:

I set a metal plate on a brick and put a cast iron skillet on it. It was smoking hot in minutes. I threw in some egg beater and had an omelet. Later I made a turkey chili. Both came out good.

Step 3:

To test heat I put an aluminum can in a ladle and focused the heat on it. I melted the can but would not turn molten in the ladle. Not bad heat source for almost nothing. CAUTION if you try this be very careful as it can cause major burns. I caught my lawn on fire. also wear sunglasses as it is very bright.



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    29 Discussions

    we made this using the king of randoms video witch is pretty much the same as yours but we made it minus the frame

    just to say this is not an original idea. The kind of Random did this a LONGER time ago.

    7 replies

    What I am interested in for my 36" X 26 inch lens. Is a sun tracker system with the Len system mounted on rotating servo controlled table to keep the sun centered up during the day light hours. With the Len mounted on sun tracking table the focal point not changing position on the center of the table. During the day the Len would track East to West, while adjusting for change in elevation. The day light power would focus on a single non moving large metal block with water or other liquids flowing to transfer the energy away and return the liquid back to be reheated.

    That would be the Super small power generator.

    Who is able to show me how?

    - 244 Jake

    i was just thinking about that lol interesting concept. as inefficient as solar panels are for electricity its probably more efficient and cheaper to convert sunlight directly into heating water or coolant anyways. probably would be to hard to do with a micro-controller there is already code out there for sun tracking for solar panels using arduino micro controllers. the rest is just working out the hardware.

    You mean like the how to make bread instructable? You really had to search deep there to find something negative to say.

    And Greenpowerscience did one even earlier than that, but an instructable doesnt need to be the only one of its kind. However instead of sunglasses I think welding goggles would be a better safety option. Also cover this thing with a blanket or tarp when you aren't using it or you have a serious fire and safety hazard on your hands.

    I've made this, and I wear both sunglasses AND welding goggles at the same time. It's seriously that bright.

    I'm not surprised. I remember burning wood with a magnifying glass as a kid and having spots in my eyes for a while. This is literally hundreds of times bigger and probably hundreds of times brighter. I wonder what the size limit on a fresnel lens is....

    i just got one of these out of an old projection tv. might have to give this a try im suprised it was able to melt an aluminum can! i was wondering how much harder it would be to put a mirror below to cook top and heat from the bottom? might need another lens then though? projection tvs have a for more big standard style lenses though...

    What type of TV did this glass came with? How do you take the glass out of the TV?

    Is this lens also called a fresnal lens? (The kind they have on the back Windows of buses so the driver gets a larger view of the road behind, and those used in solar ovens)??

    1 reply

    I have collected a bunch of these with the intention of powering a Sterling engine with one. The lenses vary in quality. The frosted lenses focus the light poorly. Look for an unfrosted, clear lens. Some of these focus the sun to such a hot spot that it will melt the surface of common brick at the point of focus.

    We have one of these at the local Makerspace, Quelab (we call it the Solar Death Ray). A nice addition (which I need to add to the Quelab Solar Death Ray), is a holder behind the lens, right at the focal point, as in these pics of Don's Solar Death Ray.


    this is always a crowd pleaser... I built one a couple of years ago thanks to Greenpowerscience. The welding googles are a must, sunglasses don't provide enough protection. Mine is currently hiding on a shelf in the garage. It is very strong and if left in the wrong place unattended it can easily start a fire. Know that you like what it can do i would suggest a more permanent attachment than duct tape. Keep up the great work.

    This is so cool, I've been trying to figure out what to do with the lens I found recently. That's amazing that it can melt cans!