Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Get ready for solar-powered rainfall and edible plants at display at Expo 2020 Dubai

The much-anticipated Dubai Expo 2020 that was supposed to take place last year had to be postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The event is now set to take place in October 2021.

As Dubai preps itself to welcome millions of people from 190 nations, new projects and pavilions have been undergoing in their final stages of presentation.

One of the striking pavilions at the Dubai Expo 2020 is a Dutch pavilion housing a vertical farm that will come into life with the power of the sun and will make it rain.

Shaped into a giant cone, the structure is blanketed with edible plants that shelters mushrooms growing within. The pavilion will be ready by June, say the makers of this environmental marvel. This resourceful structure will also house a solar-powered rain shower that captures moisture from the atmosphere and harvests hundreds of litres of water daily to irrigate the greenery.

Around 90 per cent of the structure has been completed and the final phase of it is expected to be over by the end of June, shared the innovators. During the completion of the final phase, the plants on the cone and oyster mushrooms inside the pavilion will be set up and the area around the structure will take its shape.

The 19-metre green cone called the Biotope – literally like a miniature world where the harsh, desert climate can be controlled naturally is said to be one of the major attractions of the Expo. A unique connection between water, energy and food, Dutch architects, artists, and inventors have worked together to create this pavilion to capture natural resources that can be best used to protect a fragile ecosystem.

The team of architects at this pavilion is also working on selecting a vibrant range of fragrant edible plants including mint, tomato, lime leaves and fennel to wrap around the cone. The floor and wall panels in the lounge of the Dutch pavilion will have been made from Mycelium –a bio-degradable fungi-based substance. The purpose of this would be to show how mushrooms can be repurposed as a building material.

In the heart of the pavilion, the climate will be regulated using natural occurrences of which water will be harvested from the Dubai air. The water in the ‘rainmaker’ will be cooled with solar energy which will produce cool air and will lower the temperature within.

The planners, artists and innovators aim to challenge visitors to use their imagination to bring aesthetics and technology together for a greener world.

Image: Shutterstock

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