Following on from the exciting university project around houseplants and their essential self-watering to keep alive, another project in the domain of live-saving has roused SATORI & SCOUT’s interests. This time addressing an agenda that occurs sub-terrain as opposed to natural elements that exist above the earths surface, students from the Umea Institute of Design (Sweden) have created an earthquake alarm that is wonderfully design-led, being both minimal and low-cost. Designed to look as calming as possible in normal conditions, but most helpful in the least calm of situations, such a little device is really quite innovative.
Titled ‘Terra’, such a little device has been specifically designed for those living within the ‘Ring of Fire’ – the zonal area within the Pacific Ocean in which over 90% of all the world’s earthquakes occur – and it’s aesthetic is one that subtly blends into any house’s decor as to not cause alarm or fear in any resident on a daily basis. Super simple in order to minimise costs for even the poorest of communities, such a design has even been shortlisted for the James Dyson Awards.
As the Terra design team explain, “Among different problems that people are dealing with, one common recurring issue was that the lack of information can cause constant subliminal insecurity, panic or, in the worst case, fatal decisions. These findings built the foundations for our concept, Terra: a device that increases awareness and reduces panic in countries vulnerable to earthquakes.”
Operational by actively responding to any earthquake’s initial non-destructive primary waves that travel faster than the soon-incoming destructive waves, some 60 seconds in advance. Alarming seismographic institutions of this advance warning, Terra then warns it’s nearby audience of the anticipated earthquake strength, giving people some precious 60 seconds to escape. On the occasions that a potentially destructive earthquake is detected, the Terra device emits an alarming notification and lights up in the most alert of ways; when the earthquake is deemed non-destructive, the device only emits a calming sound and gives off a minor light as to not cause fear.
Manufactured at the lowest cost possible by using as few components feasible, the small Terra device and it’s team are hoping to soon become a Kickstarter project to really put such innovation into the real world and help save lives.
Discover more about the James Dyson Award online at: JamesDysonAward.org
The James Dyson AwardsAs the competition describe, young design engineers have the ability to develop tangible technologies that can change lives. The James Dyson Award rewards those who have the persistence and tenacity to develop their ideas...
(Photography Credit : James Dyson Award)