Pratt Institute 2013
Critique: David Ruy
Above the clouds, far from the weather, the stratosphere is a region unreachable from the danger of harsh conditions below. Rain, snow, hurricanes and tsunamis are a thing of the past… but as peaceful as it sounds, it is a frontier so few have ventured and imposes considerations architects have never dreamed of. Can architects join the scientists and engineers in the realm of low space orbit? Finding inspiration from Project Loon by Google, I wondered what aesthetics we can build in the sky, and what kind of world it would turn out to be. The rendering images show glimpses of its possibility.
I chose Project Loon by Google as my inspiration for my project. After I found out that Google wanted to put hundreds of balloons in the stratosphere for internet service, I wondered what else can we do in the sky. Can architecture move up from the ground into the sky? Could it be possible for an entire world to exist in the sky? How would that look? What could it be? How beautiful can it be? what kind of aesthetic can it build?
Below are some renderings of what I thought architecture in the sky could look like.
Floating effortlessly in the stratosphere, the “mothership” will hover over the clouds, launching and spreading its “seeds” down for purposes of cloud seeding and other quick response, weather altering purposes. Its “balloons” will harvest distilled, drinkable water through the clouds using nets, similar to the fog catchers found in Latin American countries, and when finished will dock onto the “midstation.” The midstation will carry the balloons back to the mothership where the water is extracted for the residents of the small community. The “recon station” will venture out as mobile weather stations and reports to the mothership. All of these components come together to create a visual and functional concept of a promising future in low earth orbit.