Danish architects 3XN have created a swirling art installation that features some of the most advanced building and energy-generating technologies on earth. Designed for an exhibit at Louisiana’s Museum of Modern Art, the incredible pavilion is completely bio-degradable and capable of harvesting piezoelectric and solar energy. Part interactive public art installation and part design experiment, the pavilion generates energy from thin, flexible photovoltaic cells and the weight and pressure of visitors as they walk over it. This energy then powers LED lights that keep the fun going long after the sun sets.
Extraordinarily, 3XN eschewed most of the traditional materials that might have been used for this project. Instead of glass for the exterior, the designers opted a bio composite made from flax fibers cast in biological resin, while cork rather than polystyrene was used for the inner core. This essentially means that the pavilion can be incorporated back into the earth when its useful lifetime comes to an end.
The pavilion also incorporates phase changing materials that retain the sun’s energy, which is then released when the temperature drops. At exactly 23 degrees Celsius, the material changes from a solid to a liquid form. When the temperature rises, the material absorbs energy and is liquefied. But when it cools down again, the material reverts back to its solid state. The exhibit will continue through December 18, 2011.