Melting glass with solar energy - where did the idea come from?

Melting glass with solar energy: The next question everyone asks...

by Tawny Reynolds on Jan 16, 2018

Melting glass with solar energy - where did the idea come from?

Last week I mentioned my most frequently asked question - how sunlight can possibly melt glass. My second most frequently asked question is "How in the world did you come up with this idea??"⠀

I have to be honest - I didn't. A friend of mine, back when he was 14, got his hands on this giant magnifying glass - and, being a teenager in rural Alaska, went around burning everything he could find! 

The first magnifying glass melting glass with solar energy

The first magnifying glass.  You may notice our setup has changed a bit since - my current magnifying glass is rectangular, and mounted in a much more robust frame.

He melted lines in the beach sand, and started making these neat little glass teardrops...⠀

Dainty sun-melted glass teardrops
Fast forward a decade or so, and we went into business together. 

Fast forward another decade or so, and while he has moved on to other things - like a recent 8-month adventure in South America with his wife and two young kids (you can read about their previous adventures at their site - I'm still making Sundrop Jewelry and loving playing with glass!

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