The Polar Wind Park
For millions of years, the Jet Stream has played a vital role in determining the climate and weather systems experienced around the globe. Largely powered by the temperature differentials between the poles and the equator, for the majority of history the Polar Jet Stream has followed a fairly constant and predictable path. However, in recent years, with the poles warming faster than the rest of the world, these offsetting forces have become unbalanced, resulting in an unpredictable and erratic jet stream, leading to more frequent and severe extreme weather events.
This project explores the Polar Jet Stream’s changing path and characteristics, visualising this phenomenon through a range of scales and dimensions. Initially carried out through the mapping and simulation of the jet stream in the face of recent and future changes, the project evolved into the design of a series of interventions which allow us to experience, interact and record the high winds from the ground. Located along the Arctic Circle, The Polar Wind Park introduces a network of Tropospheric Kites which fly high into the atmosphere, monitoring the high winds and Jet Stream location, and in turn collecting vast swathes of data which is relayed back down to earth.
A focal point within the Polar Wind Park is the Archival Wind Tapestry. Situated at the base of the Kite, the Archival Wind Tapestry produces a continuous archive of the climatic conditions experienced by the air column directly over the site. Formed as a circular knitting machine loaded with 12 individually coloured yarns, the mechanism is controlled by the movement of the Tropospheric Kite, creating a physical record of the wind experienced by the Kite.
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