Michael Cooke founded SunWind Solar Industries Inc. in 1998 to provide solar energy information and to be a source of “hands-on” solar energy kits for children. SunWind kits encourage children to explore simple mechanics while building solar-electric machines of their own design.
Finally bringing together all of my old files over the years, for a final collating of important notes versus doodles, and came across a thin dusty file call "Automata". In it an advertisement for the Cabaret Mechanical Theatre, 1994. "Making automata is hard. It requires a very wide range of [...]
To track the Sun and record its passage was another project that seemed worthwhile. It is tricky for children, or anyone for that matter, to perceive that it is our planet that is moving relative to the Sun, rather than the Sun moving relative to the Earth. Our language is [...]
Have had an enjoyable summer, playing with various kits we have in prototype, and working on several projects at once. 25-watt solar panel with 12-volt pump in barrel One of the most interesting to me was employing solar water-pumping in our garden. I had recently discovered that one can buy on eBay a 25-watt [...]
Solar insolation curve (click to enlarge) The concept of solar energy can be abstract. We might know that it is electromagnetic radiation from the Sun, but "WHERE on the electromagnetic spectrum is it?... and "HOW MUCH is there?" Knowing where and how much gives a person the power of their solar energy [...]
Have just picked up John Perlin's latest book, Let It Shine: The 6,000-year old story of Solar Energy. This is a 30-years-later updated version of his book, A Golden Thread: 2500 Years of Solar Architecture and Technology - which was THE bible of the history of solar energy usage. Obviously, he [...]
When I first met Arnold, he was flying a solar plane around the parking lot of downtown Ganges, on Salt Spring Island. It was on a ballasted six foot wire whirling on a central pivot, the propulsive power being the plane's solar-electric driven propeller. I'd sold Arnold a few panels [...]