A sustainable cooling system made with wet terracotta cones

New Delhi, India-based architect and Ant Studio founder Monish Siripurapu is on a mission to reinvent cooling systems through traditional techniques and a bit of biomimicry. As this UN Environment Programme video explains, his team’s beehive-like earthenware sculpture generates “evaporative cooling, using little energy and zero ozone depleting or carbon-intensive refrigerants.”

individual cooling innovation
This artful approach to science and design is low tech, sustainable, and inexpensive thanks to the use of water falling through porous terracotta. The combination leverages the fired clay’s “inherent cooling properties, converting the hot air from the [diesel generators] into a pleasant breeze.”

The cooling sculpture below, for example, was measured to create a drop of six-degrees Celsius, from 42°C (107.6°F) to 36°C (96.8°F).

ant studio's beehive terra cotta cooling installation
This time-lapse video shares how the Ant Studio team re-stalled their first cooling installation project “specifically engineered cooling pots to maximize the surface area for cooling air and to facilitate rapid assembly of pots.”

It used environment-friendly elements to construct an aesthetic piece of art, creating a technique that was functional and visually appealing at the same time. The conceived beehive structure was ready to be functional with the cones forming the desired pattern. The use of cylindrical cones provided for a larger surface area to maximize the cooling effect.

Watch these related cooling videos next:
How Ingenious Animals Have Engineered Air Conditioning
• Do Cities Need More Green Roofs?
Cooling without polluting: Two new green air conditioning innovations
• Designing solar panel walls that can recycle and heat greywater

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