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Saturday, August 6, 2016

Techno-ready urban design!

By Leah Linhares
Photography: Margot Krasojevic; courtesy v2com
Read Time: 2 mins

View over helix terminal shell and conductive wire mesh which connects to existing overhead trolley lines
View over helix terminal shell and conductive wire mesh which connects to existing overhead trolley lines

With China already being the first country to test its Straddling Buses, Ar. Margot Krasojevic is one step closer to introducing the world to another futuristic urban mechanism…

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, we have finally entered that phase, where mankind is realizing its dream to create a futuristic, environment-friendly planet; and adding herself to the list is Ar. Margot Krasojević with her project: Trolleybus Gardens.

preliminary plans and sketches
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In a series of three, this second project (the first being piezoelectric playground in Pionirski park) in the city of Belgrade, Serbia, is inspired by the major transportation means of the city - trolleybuses.  The idea for Trolleybus Gardens was born from the simple electric vehicle’s operational method of using loaded trolley poles to draw power from overhead wires and transfer electricity to the control and the electric traction motors of the trolley, thus completing the electrical circuit.

trolleybus terminal wire mesh is part of the city infrastructure, trolleypoles connect to existing overhead wires
Trolleybus terminal wire mesh is part of the city infrastructure, trolleypoles connect to existing overhead wires

Amplifying this design, Ar. Margot Krasojevic’s Trolleybus Gardens will use key ingredient: printed piezoelectric cells; embedded into the helix structure and the suspended cluster of conducting wires of the trolleybus. These cells will harvest electricity from mechanical stress (or in simple terms - kinetic movement).

Electricity is environmentally friendly by comparison, used to stimulate plant growth similar to an artificial photosynthesis
Electricity is environmentally friendly by comparison, used to stimulate plant growth similar to an artificial photosynthesis

Piezoelectric materials generate electrical energy, when subjected to movement. The study shows that vibration energy is harvested by the trolleybus as it passes through terminals or when rain falls or even by passing wind!

Seating Area
Seating Area
piezoelectric crystals embedded within trolleybus terminal shell generate electricity when raining and with trolleybus kinetic movements
Piezoelectric crystals embedded within trolleybus terminal shell generate electricity when raining and with trolleybus kinetic  movements

The piezocells are stacked within the folded cross section which further increases the vibration within the structure, magnifying the electrical output; this acts as an electrical amplifier and consequently provides street lighting and WiFi for immediate neighbourhoods.

Brutalist Tech
Brutalist Tech

This design also translates into an adaptive power port enabling commuters to charge mobiles and smart cars at these trolleybus gardens. What is a futuristic city without a healthy environment? The park next to the terminal also benefits from this design as the trolleybus terminal powers the irrigation sprinklers, providing for a green environment.

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