Chimney, by Ericsson

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube - Built prototype (Copyright Ericsson)

Just presented a week ago, Ericsson’s Tower Tube could mean a revolution in the architecture of telecom towers around the world. Until now, telecom towers were always built like big steel trusses. One hardly notices these masts because of their transparency, and the high-tech look represents its high-tech purpose. Plus, it can be prefabricated, and is light to transport.

But things change. The assembling of all these small parts costs, the complex surface is hard to maintain, the wind can hardly cool the instruments, and it’s architecture… is just so dull. Then what about a telecom mast made like a big tube? High-performance (fiber) concrete provides strength, the surface is easier smaller and therefore easier to maintain, and the chimney effect of the tube provides airflow through the pipe that cools the instruments. And because of a smaller base, site acquisition could – in theory - become easier. Plus, plus, plus, plus, plus it looks good!

Correction, it could look good. With the Swedish architect Thomas Sandell Ericsson has presented a series of prototypes – possible shapes. They look fabulous, transforming the pretty horrible, chimney-like shape into a sculpture. I am not sure how cost-efficient such a form can be cast, but I bet in serious it would be possible. Every city could have its own signature designed telecom masts! These towers could mean a whole new element to the (city)landscape.

The collection of forms, designed by Thomas Sandell, remind me of the chimneys designed by Antoni Gaudì for the Güell Palace in Barcelona. The idea to change the materialization of these steel masts was earlier put forward in the Netherlands by the company Movares that has just started the production of plastic electricity masts. Similar form, but with there the main argument is to reduce the magnetic field of the electricity lines. The steel masts just reinforce these magnetic fields, creating a huge unhealthy field uninhabitable field on the ground. The plastic masts also proved smart in an unexpected way: African clients like Tanzania transport and place the small and light single-piece masts in a single helicopter flight, a regular mast takes four flights.

The project is added to the Representation and Architects pages.

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube - Stacking of the concrete elements (Copyright Ericsson)

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube - Montage (Copyright Ericsson)

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube - Montage (Copyright Ericsson)

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)

Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)
Ericsson Tower Tube (Copyright Ericsson)

 


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