Wired BotW // Einstein Tower, Potsdam, Germany

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Einstein Tower, Potsdam, Germany
The 1920s-era Einstein Tower was built to prove one of general relativity’s predictions — that gravity would cause a shift in the sun’s spectrum. Although it never succeeded, it was one of Germany’s most important observatories for many years, up until its partial destruction during WWII. A fan of Einstein, architect Erich Mendelsohn molded concrete into graceful curves to evoke Einstein’s theories. Located at the Astrophysikalisches Institut Potsdam, the observatory is still in use as a solar observatory, though it splits time as a tourist attraction as well. The tower is skewered by a 1.5-meter solar telescope that visualizes solar magnetic fields and their location within sunspots.

Amazing what you can do with concrete, this sort of thing ought to be easier with 3D printing tech….

Does it whistle in the wind?

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The Met, Bangkok, Photo: Aga Khan Award for Architecture/Patrick Bingham-Hall, Each week, Wired Design brings us a photo of one of their favorite buildings

Completed in 2009, Bangkok’s 66-story Met Tower is an attempt to build an apartment complex uniquely suited to its surroundings, rather than adapting temperate techniques to a tropical location. WOHA Architects did this by incorporating elements of more traditional tropical housing, and the results have been shortlisted for Aga Khan’s 2013 Award for Architecture. The perforated 748-foot structure is actually six columns connected by breezeways that promote cross ventilation — each unit is exposed on all four sides. The facade is inspired by traditional Thai architecture and materials, with shade and vegetation screens reaching all the way to the top.

Cool! Hopefully in all the right ways.