Cincinnati startup GoSun offers fuel-free cooking, aims to empower families

Patrick Sherwin has been working with solar energy for more than a decade. As the Owner and President of Applied Sunshine, he has a diverse background in construction, science, engineering, management and integration of renewable energy sources. Perhaps just as important to this story, he’s also a tinkerer.
“I pulled a solar collector off of a rooftop one day and brought it down to the back yard and started tinkering with it,” Sherwin says. “I’m sort of a do-it-yourself kind of guy.”
Before long, Sherwin decided to take some hot dogs from his refrigerator and place them in the tube of the collector—and suddenly he had lunch.
“Immediately, I started thinking that this technology had real potential to cook food and serve a need,” Sherwin says.
After many months of prototyping, refining and designing, Sherwin and his team have developed the GoSun Stove, a portable, high-efficiency and fuel-free solar cooker.
The GoSun technology relies on the principles of parabolic reflection, evacuation (for its insulating value) and the Greenhouse effect, and will passively work its magic whenever the sun is shining.
The GoSun team, Sherwin along with designer Matt Gillespie and legal counsel Adam Moser, recently launched a Kickstarter campaign for the stove. The campaign has been wildly successful raising more than $150,000 in just over a month.
“Patrick and I first met in 2011 in a permaculture design course hosted in Cincinnati,” Gillespie says. “We quickly realized that our attitudes and motivations were a perfect match … after he showed me the technology at work, I realized that this project had real potential to change the world.”
Aside from simply making and marketing the new technology, GoSun and its founders are dedicated to using what they’ve created to affect change and help populations around the world that need it most.
So far, they have partnerships with organizations in Ghana, Latin America, Uganda and Haiti. In some of these countries, up to 50% of family income is spent on energy needs like charcoal and firewood. The GoSun team is looking to empower these families with new solar technology, break the cycle of poverty and help the environment at the same time.
To learn more, visit the GoSun website.

By Michael Sarason

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