Solar dryers are devices that use solar energy to dry substances, especially food . There are two general types of solar dryers: Direct and indirect. 
Direct solar dryers exposes the substance to be dehydrated to direct sunlight . Historically, food and clothing was dried by using lines , or laying the items on rocks or on top of tents.  In Mongolia cheese and meat are still traditionally dried using the top of the ger (tent) as a solar dryer.  In these systems the solar drying is assisted by the movement of the air (wind) that removes the most saturated air of the items being dried.  More recently, complex drying racks  and solar tents   were constructed as solar dryers.
One modern type of solar dryer has a black absorbing surface which collects the light and converts it to heat; the substance to be dried directly on this surface. These driers may have enclosures, glass covers and / or winds to in order to increase efficiency . 
In indirect solar dryers, the black surface heats incoming air, rather than directly heating the substance to be dried. This heat is then passed over the substance to be dried and exited up often by a chimney , taking moisture released from the substance with it.  They can be very simple, just a cold tilted frame with black cloth  to an insulated brick building with active ventilation and a back-up heating system.  One of the advantages of the indirect system is that it is easier to protect the food, or other substance, from contamination or wind-blown by birds, insects, or animals.  Also, direct sun can chemically alter some foods making them less appetizing.  
- Solar cooker
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