Air, Architecture + Other Climates

[57.0°to 71.0° N : Norway] - 2019/20
John Cook, Ben Pollock + Laura Nica

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Dagmara Dyner

The Tromsø Magnetic Interference Centre

Magnetism and Solar Weather
Tromsø, Norway

In the context of research into charged energies and solar wind, my proposed scheme responds to the effects of solar weather and magnetism on Earth at different levels; both literally and figuratively, it is a prototype self-sufficient research and education centre, accompanied by an aurora observatory tower. The scheme is designed to use earth batteries to tap into telluric current in Earth’s crust, to produce its own electricity, and the visitors would have an opportunity to educate themselves by looking at the findings presented by the research lab.

The scheme involves different people and organisations, who are intertwined by three different programmes; production, which is the energy harvest, economy, the monetary exchange, and tourism, the aurora observatory.

The telluric currents are electric currents which move underground, or through the sea, and they are affected by the movement of the magnetic field. These currents are quite low in voltage but can be harvested by the use of earth batteries, which are essentially a pair of electrodes, a positive and a negative, for example a pair of dissimilar metals such as iron and copper, which are then buried in the soil or partially immersed in the sea. Due to the low voltage available for harvest, the scheme proposes to exaggerate the number of these batteries and create a sea of them, and storage units for the energy until it is needed.

The scheme is designed to highlight the difference between the Magnetic North Pole and the Geographic North Pole, which are currently around 500 km apart. In order to help with visualising the difference, the project was designed on two overlapping structural grids, one facing Geographic North Pole and the other rotated 18 degrees to face the Magnetic North Pole.

Furthermore, the visitors centre is aligned to the Magnetic North Pole every few years, to highlight the movement which is unperceivable to the human eye.

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