Libya: الصحراء الكبرى

More than 90% of Libya is covered in the Sahara Desert. We have studied the Sahara before in Algeria and Sudan but now we will explore the Libyan portion of it.

Temperatures can reach 116.6℉ or 47℃ and is the second hottest place on earth, beat out by Death Valley in California. The Libyan portion of the Sahara is home to a geological marvel known as Libyan Desert Glass.

Photo from Cosmosmagazine.com

Libyan Desert Glass or Great Sand Sea Glass can be found all over the Eastern Sahara- or the Eastern side of Libya and some parts of Western Egypt. The glass was formed 29 million years ago and just how it was formed is still debated today. Some scientists believe it is the result of a meteorite impact while others think it is the result of a large atmospheric airburst. However it formed, it requited large amounts of heat to create and the result is beautiful yellow glass.

This glass has been appreciated for thousands of years- in fact King Tutankhamun’s burial chest piece features a large scarab carved out of Libyan Desert glass.

Photo from Forbes.com

So in order to enjoy our own Libyan Desert Glass we made an edible version 🙂

Desert Glass Jigglers

To make your own edible Desert Glass, simply follow the directions on the box and make yellow jello.

You can make jigglers or basic jello. Either way, when you cut or scoop them out you have your own edible version of this geological wonder.

Sun Oven

Since the temperatures in the Sahara easily reach 100+ during the day I thought it was fitting to harness the sun in our own backyard by creating sun ovens.

You will need….

  • 1 pizza box or other small box
  • Black paper
  • Tin foil
  • Plastic wrap
  • Scissors or box cutter
  • Glue
  • Tape
  • Something to cook 🙂

Step 1: Cut three sides into the lid of your box, this is now your ‘new’ lid.

Step 2: Cover the new lid with tin foil

Step 3: Line the entire inside of the box with a layer of tin foil and then a layer of black construction paper.

Step 4: Tape the plastic wrap over the opening to keep things out and the heat in.

Step 5: Place the box in a sunny spot, facing the sun. The sun’s rays will bounce off the lid and into the box and the black paper will retain the heat and the plastic wrap will also trap it. Finally, put your food inside- in our case s’mores 🙂 – prop the new lid open with a stick or ruler.

Step 6: Let it sit in the sun until the food is ready. Enjoy!

For more Sahara Desert fun check out our adventures to Algeria and Sudan!

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