,CRT/N E-news Vol 5 no 43
RTKC Nepal has recently expanded its service with Solar Cookers International (SCI) Performance Evaluation Process (PEP) Test Station for solar cookers.
Standardized testing of solar cookers provides public accountability for manufacturers and provides users (individuals, government agencies, etc.) with information they need to select appropriate solar cooking devices. As a neutral and brand-agnostic international organization, SCI developed its performance evaluation process (PEP) for solar cookers to answer the need of single standard for testing. SCI’s PEP uses the ASAE S580.1 protocol for Testing and Reporting Solar Cooker Performance to report single standard cooking power rating (in Watts) for each solar cooker tested.
The PEP test station is portable (fits inside carry-on luggage), easy to setup, powered at the test site, and able to withstand most test environments. Thermal performance results are acquired by the test instrument, which is capable of recording temperature, wind speed and solar irradiance to a space delimited file on an SD card for later post-processing to compute a standard cooking power. The test station is expandable to monitor temperatures in up to 3 different cookers simultaneously. There is flexibility in test duration, test interval, test medium loading as well as software configurable according to sun elevation.