I was doing my daily web surfing and I came across a “new energy-saving” product. If you have watched the Emma Watson version of Beauty and the Beast, you probably remember her laundry washing contraption. This new product is exactly like that, only foot powered. Being the DIY junkie that I am, I immediately thought, ‘I could probably make that at home as they did in the 1800s.’
Then I heard about the Solar Stirling Plant and all its amazing promises straight from the 19th Century. I don’t know about you but I’m noticing a huge trend.
Saving energy in a clean way while saving money is not a new hope. For many decades now we have been trying to find ways to achieve this but most of these methods actually cost a bit more to accomplish in a once off payment than we are ready to face. However, this system promises to be easier and, within days, save you money on your bills.
If you’re the type of person who grows their own vegetables in their backyard, this might be fairly easy for you. In fact, I am pretty sure you might enjoy this. Or maybe you’re the type of person who spends hours reading about do-it-yourself projects but at the end of the day you never do anything, keep reading, this review might truly inspire you today.
What is this project about?
As you can probably guess from the title, this will be a sun-powered product. Not only does this answer the energy crisis problem plaguing the world but this should give you 12 times as much power as the standard photovoltaic solar panels for a fraction of the cost.
Using products from any hardware store all over the world, you should be able to make this at home in a matter of days. Of course, that will depend on how much time you dedicate to the project.
Based on an invention by a Scottish inventor, Doctor Robert Stirling in the 19th Century, the Stirling Engine is a closed-system engine that eliminates exhaust or venting of pressure. The Stirling Engine is used on submarines and boats. It’s like a steam engine… without the steam. It can pretty much be powered by an energy source, in this case, it will use solar energy.
The Solar Stirling Plant uses parabolic mirrors to focus the sun’s energy into the Stirling Engine just like a satellite dish. Both concepts are obviously sound because you might know the satellite dish focuses the radio waves into the receiver and, if you’ve ever tried anything with a magnifying glass, you also know that focused energy is pretty powerful.
Alternating heating and cooling gas will create fluctuating pressure which is used to drive the pistons up and down thus turning the generator and creating electricity! The engine turns solar energy into mechanical energy to electrical energy. A scientific DIY a twelve-year-old can do for the science fair but functional enough to get the parents involved.
How can you get started?
As the case with almost all Do-It-Yourselves projects, you can get introduced to the idea pretty easy. If you follow the link you get the book that gives you a detailed explanation of how your energy plant will work. The book is so well-written and easy to follow. It’s like “Rocket Science for Dummies” and I wasn’t even insulted.
You get an introduction to the project, a breakdown of the major components you need and in a few pages you’re on Chapter Three learning how to assemble your project. I would suggest reading the entire book first a couple of times, not just to get your money worth of a thirty page read, but just to make sure you understand what you’re getting yourself into.
Also included in this incredibly short guide is what I think is a bonus. You get some maintenance tips as well as ideas for your future improvements. I feel I need to let you know that this book is a guide and as such, you may want to do more research on your own. But even if you don’t want to read more, you get full technical support to assist you.
What are the benefits?
- This is a concept that has been around for centuries and because of that, you will find that there is plenty of information regarding this project. Information is power and will probably improve the outcome of your project
- According to the creators, you can create your very own energy plant with as little as $100. As I mentioned before, this is a very small fraction of the $30 000 that you would have to spend to get photovoltaic solar panels. That’s a significant difference!
- To top it up, this project will produce 12 times the amount of power produced by standard solar panels. You can generate almost 40% of your household energy usage. This translates to a major cut down on your electricity bill and potentially canceling the cost of building this DIY.
- Because the concept has been around for centuries, it is obviously tested so you already know that the results are going to be there at the end. Granted, of course, you do the right thing. In fact, to prove this works, a Swedish company in China made a plant based on this very concept
- If this is starting to sound daunting, don’t worry. Because this concept is basically rudimentary you can make the plant with supplies from your local hardware store. In fact, they boast that you can make this in any country in the world.
- You probably heard the term engine and assumed there would be some sort of grinding noise. Not in this case. This engine is silent enough to forget it’s there but loud enough for you to know it’s working.
- An obvious benefit that I probably don’t even have to mention is that the main energy source is the never-depleting sun. Besides the fact that solar energy is a clean alternative, working with the Stirling Engine that uses recycled gas to generate electricity makes this possibly the easiest way to get environmentally friendly electricity.
- The project doesn’t take up much space after completion making it a compact solution to a big energy issue.
- If you buy the book, not only do you get a 60-day 100% money back guarantee but you will also get full technical support on your project.
- If you want to skip all the hustle of doing it all yourself you can just buy the dish. That will cut your job in half but it will cost you at least $100 more. The option still stands and the cost might be canceled when you start saving on your bills.
And the drawbacks?
- If you want to actually start and complete this project you might want to lay-off the research. While the book tries to convince you that it’s simple stuff when you look behind the shiny bells and whistles you will see that there’s a lot of science that goes into this and that might make this project confusing. If you get confused easily, just follow the instructions to spare yourself a headache.
- Because it is solar powered it might not work to its maximum capacity when there is no sun. But this can be solved by simply adding a capacitor bank, after some conversion techniques.
- Last drawback is that before you get too excited about the cost of making one, you need to consider where you are. While it might cost less for some countries, it might end up costing a little bit for you. And also factor in the amount you spent on the book.
- Tried and tested
- Can be done with $100
- Produces 12 times the amount of power generated by standard PV solar panels.
- You can get material from the local hardware store.
- Quiet engine.
- Compact design doesn’t take up too much space.
- Full technical support when you purchase the book.
- The cost of assembly might be more than $100 depending on location.
- Needs sun-light to operate.
- The technical aspect might be confusing.
So what’s the verdict?
The book does what it says it will do. If scientific jargon is not your thing, this book will teach you how to assemble the plant in a way that isn’t confusing. You get a breakdown of the things you need and how to place them. And if after all that, you still have problems the technical support is available to help you.
Because it is money-back guaranteed it is hard to see what you have to lose. Most of the items needed are found at the hardware store and if you can’t find it there you can always try online.
Speaking of online, because this has been around for so long you can easily find out more about the project before taking it on. This will include translating the measurements in the guide because some people did find them confusing. If they do trip you up just know you’re not the only one.
Whether you’re into doing projects for fun or you want to try to do something that will save you money in the long run, this is that project to do. It’s by no means a small project that but it is educational and fairly cheap. Who knows this might be a start for your household to go green and save money and the environment.