THE UNIVERSITY of Brighton and the council made the most of the sunshine this week and enjoyed a solar-powered barbecue on the beach.
Hundreds of people, including a television crew, came to watch the demonstration and enjoyed sausages cooked by the university’s culinary arts studio on a solar powered cooker.
The event on the beach at Holywell was organised in partnership with Eastbourne Borough Council, which already uses the power of the sun through its Solarbourne solar panel programme.
The sausages were cooked on a solar powered cooker funded by the Springboard Grants Programme.
The cooker looks like a satellite dish with reflective panels and works by focusing the sun’s rays into a hotplate on which the raw food is placed.
Parabolic mirrors, like those used for the beach event, are highly effective but not used in the UK because of the perceived bad weather conditions.
But after weeks of rain, the Sunshine Coast lived up to it name this week and the solar powered cooker worked perfectly.
Dr Ioannis Pantelidis, a senior lecturer from Brighton University, who led the demonstration, said, “We knew Eastbourne’s reputation as the Sunshine Coast wouldn’t let us down.
“We were amazed at just how many people came and we’ve had fantastic feedback.
“ From talking to people, it seems there is hardly any difference between the sausages cooked on a propane cooker and those cooked by the power of the sun – except, of course, that one costs money to heat and the other is free.”
Councillor Gill Mattock, deputy leader of the council, said, “It was fascinating to see the potential of solar-powered cooking and we were delighted to support the University of Brighton in demonstrating its practicality.
“Eastbourne beach is a wonderful place to spend the day and, although it’s been fun, there is a serious message to learn about the benefits of solar power.”
Pictured: Ken Woodward and Ioannis Pantelidis (left and right) from the University of Brighton Culinary Arts Studio with Eastbourne Borough Council Energy Initiatives Office, Nick Adlam, and Deputy Leader of the Council, Gill Mattock (centre).