MIT students have spent the past several weeks assembling a 12-foot mirrored dish that can concentrate sunlight 1,000 times over. In the picture here, we see the panel instantly igniting a plank of wood in its path. As for lighting your house-no problem.

Reported to be the "most official solar collector in existence" by those behind the project. But how does this light-focusing panel actually create electricity?


The plan is to hold a water-filled 12-foot black coil right in front of the dish. The heat from the focused sunlight is enough to quickly vaporize the water into steam, which could be harnessed in a variety of ways (including a steam-powered turbine to create electricity).

While you can't buy the dish yet, the students have formed a company named RawSolar. Hopefully they'll be mass producing their designs soon. [RawSolar and MIT] Thanks Eric!