Challenge: "Design the light post of the future. This must be ready for smart city applications. The focus will be on the materialization of the post construction."
With its solar panels and wind turbine, the Helix is a versatile public illumination solution that can be easily placed anywhere around the world. It's modular design makes it adapt to any user's needs while also facilitating ease of repair and futureproofing.
In collaboration with: Antoine Dunand, Irene Ojeda and Jakub Weissgerber
Powered by wind and solar energy, the Helix lamp post manages to remain self sustainable all in sunny, rainy or windy environments.
Modularity allows the possible clients to adapt the product in order to fit their needs best. It can be equipped with up to 2 modules. Options include, but are not limited to: wifi hotspots, various light fixtures and surveillance camera systems.
The simple and intuitive assembly process not only allows for the fast deployment of the product on a large scale but also enables quick repair and maintenance.
Parts of the process where I played a key role
To kick off the project, the functions necessary for the product were laid out. This was done in order to decide which of them will alter the form drastically.
After deciding on the subfunctions that the product will need, a morphological chart was used to create various concepts that could fulfill them.
Experimenting with different ways of producing electricity using wind and/or solar, by taking into consideration multiple types of solar panel and wind turbine setups.
In order to consider a helix turbine as the main direction moving forward, calculations had to be done to ensure that power generation will match the consumption. It does!
To choose the right material for all of our components we decided to use the CES Edu Pack material database. Depending on the part, various material properties have been taken into consideration.
For the maintenance hatch, cupboard prototypes of a multitude of locking mechanisms were created, in order to choose the fastest and most ergonomic option.
After deciding on all the major design choices, a CAD model was created and, later on, renders that were used to present the concept to the client and the other stakeholders.
After choosing the materials, we conducted FEM analysis on the essential parts of our product. Especially the ones that will see the most stress.
Taken into consideration was also how our product would be manufactured, to present the client with a feasible design that can be brought to life.
To communicate the actual size of the components and to give a clear understanding of scale, we put together a parts catalogue with all the necessary dimentions.
An assembly manual was also created to show the process a client would undertake to set up our product. This was made as simple as possible with a LEGO inspired, layout style, of successive renders.
Because of the size of the project we decided to 3D print a scaled down version of the design. This was done in order to observe the proportions in real life and to get feedback from our client.