Photograph of the prototype of the solar cooker.
FA info icon.svgAngle down icon.svgProject data
AuthorsCamila Manzanares
Alexia Guevara
Joaquín Olmedo
Stefany Lazo
Bessy Girls
Silvia Escobar
Status Prototyped
usesdwelling , home
Instance ofsolar cooker
OKH ManifestDownload
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LocationHigher School of Economics and Business

Solar cooking is a viable alternative to saving propane gas and helps reduce pollution, which uses the sun to cook various recipes. In addition, its mechanism is easy to understand, reduces the risk of accidents, and is cheaper to manufacture.


The solar cooker has a hexagonal shape made of cardboard where each part is covered with a parasol, which allows heat transfer to the pan. This is intended to help street food vendors save money on propane gas and thus avoid further pollution in the environment. Additionally, it has a base made of PVC pipes, elbows, cross and tees; which helps people not have problems when preparing their food and feel as comfortable as possible while doing so. On the other hand, the information necessary to make the kitchen with digital manufacturing tools is also presented.


Most people who sell food on the street must spend on propane gas to prepare the food they offer daily, so sometimes their profits are little and at the same time they pollute the environment. Due to this, a solar kitchen has been created to reduce your gas-related expenses, avoid pollution and take advantage of a renewable energy source that is sunlight. This has a hexagonal shape, which allows greater concentration in the transmission of heat in the food; In addition, it has two accesses to insert the pans for greater convenience when cooking.

Design process

The design process for a solar cooker begins with the definition of the requirements and objectives of the project. The necessary materials, dimensions and shape of the kitchen, and solar energy requirements must be taken into account. Then, 2D sketches are made to define the dimensions of the kitchen and 3D design software is used to model the components.

The criteria used to design a solar cooker may vary according to the specific needs and objectives of the project, however, some of the aspects that are usually considered include:

  • Efficiency: It must be as efficient as possible in capturing solar energy to be able to cook food effectively.
  • Portability: So they can be easily disassembled and transported.
  • Available materials: You must take into account the materials available in the area where the solar cooker will be used, to make it more accessible.
  • Use of sustainable materials: Materials must be chosen that do not contaminate or damage the environment.
  • Cost: It must be accessible and affordable so that it can be used in communities where alternative solutions for cooking and heating food are needed.

Our process of selecting and preparing the solar cooker involved choosing the appropriate model (hexagonal), acquiring the necessary materials, manually building it, and carrying out tests to verify its operation and performance.

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Proposal Description

Bill of materials

Option 1: buy all materials

Table with the list of materials to be used with local market price and possible suppliers, in this case Almacenes Vidrí

ItemAmountCost per unitTotal
PVC pipe 315 PSI 1/2" — Vidri2US$2.90US$5.80
Car sunshade — Vidri2US$2.95US$5.90
PVC elbow 3 ports 1/2" — Vidri8US$1.95US$15.60
1" double-sided tape — Vidri1US$1.25US$1.25
Transparent tape — Vidri1USD 0.80USD 0.80
Frame with saw — Vidri1US$3.50US$3.50
Thermoadhesive silicone bar — Vidri3USD 0.35USD 1.05
PVC tee without thread 1/2" — Vidri4USD 0.24US$0.96
PVC Cross 1/2" — Vidri1USD 1.20USD 1.20
grand totalUS$36.06EUR 30.96 <br />GBP 26.28 <br />CAD 44.64 <br />MXN 750.60 <br />INR 2,694.60 <br />

Option 2: purchase of materials, laser cutting and 3D printing

Table with the list of materials to buy/print/cut

ItemAmountCost per unitTotal
Car sunshade — Vidri2US$2.95US$5.90
1" double-sided tape — Vidri1US$1.25US$1.25
3-way elbow — 3D Factory Lab8US$4.30US$34.40
Cross — 3D Factory Lab1US$4.15US$4.15
Tees — 3D Factory Lab4US$3.85US$15.40
1 meter tube — 3D Factory Lab4US$10.15USD 40.60
Tube 0.50 meter — 3D Factory Lab4US$5.60US$22.40
Tube 0.25 meter — 3D Factory Lab12US$2.85US$34.20
MDF and cutting doors — Guevara's Crafts1US$20.55US$20.55
grand totalUS$178.85EUR 153.08 <br />GBP 129.94 <br />CAD 220.72 <br />MXN 3,711.30 <br />INR 13,323.30 <br />

Manufacturing costs

It was estimated that the manufacturing cost of the solar cooker can be from $36.06 to $178.85 approximately, depending on whether you want to use digital manufacturing techniques or not.

Digital files

On Appropedia you can find all the files necessary for the manufacture of this kitchen loaded.

laser cutting files


File: rectangle23x25.svg



3D Printing Files - Tubes

File:Tube 0.50 meters.stl

File:Tube 1 meter.stl

File:Tube 0.25 meters.stl

3D Printing Files - Joins

File:Elbows 3 mouths.stl

File:3-hole tee.stl

File:3-hole tee.stl

Demonstration video of the use of Hexagon Solar Cooker


Prototype manufacturing

Our model is on a life-size scale of a kitchen. With a base at the average height of people. After carrying out the respective tests, it is considered that they are appropriate measures. Some of the limitations that one may have when making the kitchen is that when printing the necessary parts it can take a long time and can have a very high price, which is why the manufacturing costs have also been placed. of this without the need for digital manufacturing tools.

Assembly instructions

  1. Find a sunny, shade-free place to locate the kitchen.
  2. Assemble the base of the kitchen, the tubes in their respective places and the kitchen on the base in the shape of a cross. When assembling the base you should have a rectangle.
  3. To make the kitchen, glue the rectangles to the hexagon so that the two smallest parts are next to each other. We recommend that you glue these two last to make the work easier. Furthermore, you should not stick these to the bottom of the kitchen, but from above, so that there is a space underneath them that will allow food to be introduced and removed.
  4. Once you have the hexagonal “box”, cover the entire interior surface with a car sunshade (we recommend this material since aluminum foil heats up more slowly)
  5. As you will notice, when covering our kitchen with sunshade there are two sides (the smaller ones) on which it does not stick completely, this so that we can raise and lower this material in order to create a “door”.
  6. Orient the kitchen towards the sun, so that the sun's rays fall directly on the reflector.
  7. Adjust the kitchen lids, these act as reflectors, so that they reflect the sun towards the center of the kitchen.
  8. Place the pan or pot (depending on what you are going to cook) in the center of the kitchen, so that it is warm while you prepare the food.
  9. Prepare food as you normally do.
  10. Place the food in the pan, directly in the center of the stove.
  11. Wait until your food is ready and enjoy.
  12. Clean the kitchen with a damp cloth or mild soap, so that the reflectors are not damaged.

Safety measures

We recommend taking the following measures when cooking with our solar oven:

• Use gloves or a cloth to remove the pan, this is because the sun hits the entire pan directly, so the handle will be hot.

• Look for a flat surface when placing the kitchen, this way you will prevent it from wobbling and falling.

• Avoid leaving flammable materials near or in the kitchen.

• Avoid touching hot parts of the kitchen, both when putting food in and taking it out.

• Wait a few minutes before disassembling the stove, move it to a shady place to cool down and then you can proceed to put it away.


Option 1: when purchasing all materials

ItemAmountCost per unitTotal
grand totalUS$36.06EUR 30.96 <br />GBP 26.28 <br />CAD 44.64 <br />MXN 750.60 <br />INR 2,694.60 <br />

Option 2: purchase of materials, laser cutting and 3D printing

ItemAmountCost per unitTotal
Materials — Vidrí, 3D Factory Lab and Guevara's Crafts1US$178.85US$178.85
grand totalUS$178.85EUR 153.08 <br />GBP 129.94 <br />CAD 220.72 <br />MXN 3,711.30 <br />INR 13,323.30 <br />

Conclusions and recommendations

A good solar cooker has the ability to impact the costs of street food vendors, who are our target customers. They will be able to keep food hot without having to incur gas costs or lack electricity on the streets where they travel. In addition, the dimensions of the kitchen are adequate to store enough food for your sales and it has the features to transport it easily. However, its optimal operation depends on the weather conditions in which it is located, so on cloudy days they will be forced to look for another alternative.

Regarding the design, you could look for the option of making the walls of the kitchen and the support foldable so that they adjust to the desired size. Considering that the parasol works and is low cost, but has the drawback that it takes a long time to heat up, alternatives with more powerful refractory materials could be sought.


  • Anonymous. (December 2, 2019). Solar oven for cooking in an ecological and efficient way. Twinenergy.
  • Tortosa, E. d. (April 1, 2020). Solar cooking: an economical and sustainable alternative. LEE.
  • Anonymous. (November 1, 2022). Solar cookers and ovens. The clean energy corner.
  • Broadway Panhandler. (2023). Solar Cooker Guide.
FA info icon.svgAngle down icon.svgPage data
Part ofESEN Digital Manufacturing
Keywordsdesign , innovation , fab lab , digtial manufacturing
AuthorsCamila Manzanares , Alexia Guevara , Joaquín Olmedo , Stefany Lazo , Bessy Chicas , Silvia Escobar
OrganizationsIS IN
LanguageSpanish people)
TranslationsRussian , English
Related2 subpages , 24 pages link here
Impact383 page views
CreatedApril 18, 2023 by Camila Manzanares
ModifiedApril 30, 2024 by Kathy Nativi
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