People aren't struck by lightning very often, but when they are, it's often in the open air. Places like meadows and the tops of mountains, also great places for camping, are ripe with spots for the casual lightning bolt to hit. This and a fear of thunderstorms gave Finnish designer Kama Jania a lightning bolt of her own -- the extraordinary Bolt tent that will keep users safe in even the worst storm.
When the weather gets bad, the last place you want to be is out in the open. If you’re a hiker, climber, or camper, though, that may be just where you are. Thanks to Kama Jania, you may now have a way to shelter from those fast-moving storms.
Jania designed three “Bolt” tents — the Bolt “half,” Bolt “one,” and Bolt “air.” All three styles were tested in lightning storms and all of them protected the users against both direct and ground strikes. Ground strikes can occur when lightning hits the ground and flows through the ground and then through the foot of someone walking outside.
“When I was a child I was terrified by loud thunder and lightning, even when I was at home,” Kama Jania told Gizmag. “Now I am also scared of thunderstorms, but only in open spaces, particularly in the mountains. I love outdoor activities such [as] hiking and climbing and sometimes I find myself in a difficult situation, especially when a storm comes in. Thus I created the Bolt series of tents.”
Using aluminum poles and an aluminum connector, the tent can withstand 200 kiloamperes of electricity. Waterproof fabric, Mylar insulation and copper wiring make up the grounding apparatus. With the help of Professor Michał Kracik PhD, and physicists Konrad Sobolewski and Aleksander Bogucki, Jania worked figured out the exact calculations required to test the Bolt tent against high voltage contact. All this without the tent catching on fire or causing other damage to the materials used.
Although the tent is a great success, Jania does not plan to take the tents into production herself; she is looking for commercial partners who might be interested though – will that be you?
Images via Kama Jania