No propane, no fuel, no matches, no problem with the GoSun, solar-powered grill, as explained by GoSun’s Peter Harten. This isn’t an everyday grill, however, as, in addition to grilling, it will steam, bake, boil and fry with temperatures, according to GoSun’s website, of up to 550 degrees Fahrenheit. Harten explains that the materials are optimized for converting solar to thermal energy that is transferred to a vacuum sealed, dual layer glass cylinder.
This allows it to heat the food on the inside, while staying cool to the touch on the outside. This makes it extremely portable, as you can cook on the go (say backpacking). The outdoor enthusiast market wasGoSun’s initial target, when it launched its successful crowd-source project a few years ago. One of the major benefits for the backpacking crowd is that fuel isn’t required and it works well at high-altitudes where traditional fuel-powered grills are a challenge.
At International CES 2016, GoSun showed a new model (due out in the Fall 2016, according to GoSun’s website) targeted to more traditional barbecue use-cases (e.g. the backyard grill). This version has optional photo voltaic cells as a way of charging a battery so one can keep cooking even after the sun has set; although that may not be necessary, as reading the reviews, it has such good insulation that it will continue to cook hours after dark and is apparently quite tasty.
They just launched via a crowd-source campaign, a lower priced product, the GoSun Dogger, that cooks two hot dogs (or equivalents) in ten minutes. This $59 unit is sort a personal, portable grill. Beyond that application, the website touts it as a teaching tool and they even have an optional guide that turns Go Dogger into a STEM teaching tool.
The STEM application is indicative of GoSun’s mission to do more than cook a better hot dog, hamburger or veggie kabob. GoSun touts the health benefits of barbecuing without the pollution associated with traditional flame-driven approaches. Their products are particularly useful in 3rd-world countries, where flames are often the only choice.
Cincinnati native and GoSun founder, Patrick Sherwin, was motivated by his time living in Haiti and Latin America to use social entrepreneurship to help the less fortunate and founded the GoSun foundation in that effort. According to the site, “Every GoSun sold subsidizes the sale of a GoSun to the people who can benefit the most in the developing world.” So, he and his team have not only invented a device that will cook your hamburger, but will warm your heart at the same time.