Science Solar Cooker Project Work

Investiage effect of cup material on temperature change

Materials & Methods

Make a solar cooker out of a shoebox with black paper, aluminum foil and cling wrap.

You will also need cups of different materials, preferably of same sizes.

1.Fill the cups with equal volumes of water.

2.Measure water temperature in the cup first before placing the cup into the solar cooker.

3.Leave under the sun for a couple of minutes(for this one we used 5 mins)

4.Take out cup and measure temperature again.

5.Record temperature.

6.Repeat steps 2-5 for the other cups.


Title: To investigate the effect of the material of the cup on the increase in temperature.

Hypothesis: The water gets heated to the highest temperature in the aluminum cup

Independent Variable: Material of cup -- glass, plastic, ceramic, aluminium

Dependent Variable: The water temperature at the end of experiment

Constants: Volume of water (100ml), duration of experiment (5 mins), exposed surface area, angle the flap was raised.

Control: Area of exposed surface area

No. of trials: 4 trials

Test drive 1

Information not reflected on table.

Initial Temperature

Glass: 33(Control), 34(Attempt1), 37(Attempt2)

Ceramic: 33(Control), 34(Attempt1), 33.5(Attempt2)

Plastic: 33(Control), 36(Attempt1), 34(Attempt2)

Aluminium: 32(Control), 37(Attempt1), 34(Attempt2)

Temperature After Experiment

Glass: 34(Control), 35(Attempt1), 39(Attempt2)

Ceramic: 33.5(Control), 35(Attempt1), 34(Attempt2)

Plastic: 33(Control), 37(Attempt1), 35(Attempt2)

Aluminium: 33.5(Control), 38(Attempt1), 35(Attempt2)

Analysis and Discussion

Conclusion: The glass cup has the highest average increase in temperature. The experiment results reject our hypothesis.

Scientific Explanation: Even though aluminum is a better conductor of heat than glass, the water in the glass has a higher temperature than the water in the aluminum cup. We think this is because the weather condition on that day is not very stable (one minute is sunny, after a few minutes it become cloudy)

Since aluminum is a good conductor of heat and conducts heat very fast, it will be affected with the slight changes of temperature when there is no sun (will lose heat when not under the sun)

Glass on the other hand, is a poor conductor of heat and would not be as badly affected by the change in surrounding temperature and sunlight. And being a poor conductor of heat, glass would gain and lose heat slowly, thus retaining heat.

Therefore, the water in the glass will have the highest temperature.


Use cups of same size and conduct the experiment within the same day with same weather conditions (eg sunny, cloudy).

And also make sure that the sun is VERY strong (no clouds in the sky) as the clouds might block out the sun. We should also conduct more trails of our experiment to make our results accurate and reliable.

Duty List

Duty List:

Ziyuan -- Supplied us with the cups.

Felicia -- Safe kept the solar cooker

Ling Yan -- Took temperature on the experiment day and helped with the flyer.

Wen Qi -- Took video and did the flyer.


Ms Pan for the very informative consultation session.

Our parents for allowing us to meet up during the March holidays to do the experiment.

Fellow groupmates for tolerating us.

The experiment wouldn't be a success without them.