How to design and build solar energy devices including cookers, water pumps, steam engines and distilleries without electricity. Translated into English for the first time, this classic engineering text walks you through the issues and thought processes needed to successfully design solar energy devices. Read this first-- Or risk re-inventing the wheel... More
This book is all about making devices that run on energy from the Sun. In 1869, the era of Jules Verne, there were no electronic components. There were no solar panels, no wiring, no plastic or high-end manufacturing techniques. Yet, the engineers of that era designed mechanical devices, often partly or fully automatic, to collect solar energy and use it to pump water up hill, melt metal, run engines, cook food and much more.
Different people will use this book in different ways, depending on what they want from it. If you are a maker or an engineer who wants to find diagrams of a variety of solar devices, or if you want to build these non-electrical steampunk devices, the last chapters of the book will be most interesting. If you are interested in the ancient history of solar engineering, the first part of the book is most important. If you want to learn the issues of solar engineering so that you understand how to develop and improve new solar devices, it is best to read the book straight through.
You will notice that M. Mouchot is obsessed with generating steam power– In his day, mechanical transport meant ‘steam trains,’ and most industrial equipment was run by coal-fired steam engines. Designing devices that could generate steam pressure with solar heat allowed him to connect to, and run, a wide range of ready-made equipment. If you want to make Steampunk devices that are authentically from the Era of Steam, and yet are fully grounded in green engineering, or if you are interested in Solar Energy and want to read about devices besides solar ovens that can run on solar energy, this is the book for you.
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