Design, construction and testing of an indoor energy saving household PV-solar cooker
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In Uganda, more than 2 kWh of power is used in the preparation of food which represents more than 90% of the average household energy usage. To meet such a high energy demand, carbon-based energy resources such as firewood, charcoal and in some instances, kerosene are the common options exploited. Household air pollution (HAP) produced from the burning of carbon-based fuels for home cooking and heating has detrimental impacts on the respiratory health of the household occupants and greenhouse effects on the earth’s atmosphere. The cleaner electric cookers have been on the Ugandan market for decades but up to date, they have not yet gained country-wide adoption due to the high costs of electricity. and Hydro Electric Power (HEP) is not accessible in some parts of the country. Solar cookers have been developed to have much lower recurring costs but since they mostly operate outdoors to concentrate and utilize the sun’s heat, making their adoption insignificant. The main objective of this study is to develop an induction solar cooker that use direct current operating on the principle of inductive heating. Inductive heating is an energy – efficient technology which produce heat by the joule effect. The circuit designed uses a Zero voltage switching (ZVS) technology. The induction solar cooker sets up a strong alternating magnetic field which induces eddy currents in a ferromagnetic pan raises the temperature of a ferromagnetic pan. Using about 120 Wh of battery power, the cooker induced over 1,500 Wh of cooking power. Induction heating proved to be extremely fast in raising and maintaining high cooking temperatures, making it to be one of the best alternatives for traditional cooking method.