Space Heater

Now that it is winter, you are getting cold. What will you
do? I have the perfect solution for you, a space heater. I know
what you are thinking, “OK, I have one of those, but how does it
heat me so well? It is so hot, why does it not melt itself? And,
why is there no heat behind it?” Well, the answer can be
summed up in one word, parabola. Now you may be thinking,
“Huh? What is a parabola and how does it direct heat?” That is
what I will explain. A space heater uses electricity to make heat
and a parabolic dish directs that heat.
The space heater is not inherently hot; it must make its
heat. But how does it do this? A space heater is plugged into a
wall outlet where it is given a source of electricity. Inside the
heater, a transformer reduces the voltage to only how much it
needs. This is important for the next step. The electricity is
passed through metal rods or coils that have a very high
resistance. The resistance of the metal makes it heat to a very
high temperature. The heat is then directed by a metal parabolic
dish that can withstand these temperatures. If too much
electricity is passed through, the rods or coils will melt or the
parabolic dish will melt.
Of course, your question, “What is a parabola?” still remains
unanswered. A parabola is a type of conic section, a delicious
slice of cone. It has a vertex with two curved lines protruding
from that vertex. The two curves are symmetrical to a line
through the vertex that passes between them. A parabola is two
dimensional, though a typical parabolic dish is many parabolas
with the same vertex and line of symmetry. the dish on the
heater may have a back that is wider to allow for more heat
production. The dish is concave and is behind the coils so the
metal reflects the heat in one direction, preventing heat from
scattering.
The space heater is a machine that produces heat by
passing electricity through a series metal of rods or coils with a
high resistance. The heat bounces off a metal parabolic dish and
into your face. So now that it’s winter, what will you do? That’s
right. Space heater, and a parabolic dish.