An installation in Taipei is bringing awareness to air quality. The LED-lit BMX track and accompanying lung-like structures which change color reveal the presence of airborne pollutants. Loop.pH’s interactive VelO2 exhibit allowed onlookers to see real-time changes in the quality of the city’s breeze and hopes to inspire residents to adopt low-emission practices.
The two week-long installation at Velo-City Global 2016 provided a glimpse into the reality of pollution and public safety. Loop.pH featured a BMX pump track – a loop which requires no pedaling thanks to a series of humps to accelerate riders – equipped with LED lights that lit up as cyclists rode by. But the real eye-catching detail was the pair of large structures like human lungs and tree branches that were rigged with pollution sensors.
The lights range varied from blue-greens to bright reds, depending on the presence of six different pollutants in the air. When the sensors, provided by Change London, picked up on something ominous, the colors would flash to warmer colors. Co-founder of Loop.pH Rachel Wingfield told Dezeen, “We would notice things like a boat passing by on the river and our data would spike. The colours would suddenly go orange.”
Symbolically, the giant “lungs” broadcast the colors for distress and sparked conversation about Taipei citizens being in a position to change the course of poor air quality. The studio hopes the installation will serve as inspiration to adopt more environmentally friendly practices, such as riding bikes, to improve air quality. Now, after discussions with Taiwan’s minister of environment, the studio is in talks to expand the project throughout the country.
Images via Loop.pH