Repurposed shipping containers make a bold statement at the National Theater Company of Korea

March 1, 2017 by  
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Seoul’s trendy mall made of shipping containers isn’t the only place you’ll see cargotecture in the city. Urbantainer , the same local firm behind the world’s largest cargotecture mall Common Ground , recently completed an extension for the National Theater Company of Korea , one of the nation’s flagship theater companies based in the capital. The new visitor area comprises a series of red shipping containers skillfully transformed into a contemporary and functional space that still preserves an industrial character. The National Theater Company of Korea (NTCK) commissioned Urbantainer to create a visitor area that would serve as a social space within the grounds. To integrate the new space with the existing buildings, the designers aligned the containers with the building axis and painted them the same shade of red as the NTCK logo. “While highlighting the modular form of containers, the design is deliberately held light and maintains a balance with existing features and objects such as a former oil station and the grass square,” writes Urbantainer. Related: World’s largest shipping container shopping mall pops up in Seoul Although the cargotecture building looks like it’s made up of separate containers stacked together, many of the container walls were removed to create an interior with a 12-meter-long column-less space to accommodate large gatherings. High ceilings, access to natural light, and the light color palette give the interior a spacious and open feel. The flexible open-plan area can be manipulated with partitions and moving walls to allow for a variety of functions. + Urbantainer Images © Kyungsub Shin

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Repurposed shipping containers make a bold statement at the National Theater Company of Korea

13 charitable green gifts that give back

November 29, 2016 by  
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Today is Giving Tuesday – and to celebrate we’ve rounded up 13 organizations that help you turn your holiday shopping into an act of kindness. Voltaic donates up to three solar power kits to aid workers for every solar charger it sells , the National Wildlife Federation dedicates proceeds from its holiday birdseed wreaths to protect American wild animals, and you can even adopt an African elephant for just $25 from the World Wildlife Fund. Check out our favorite gifts that give back here ! GIFTS THAT GIVE BACK >

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13 charitable green gifts that give back

There may be water far deeper in our planet than previously thought

November 23, 2016 by  
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Researchers are surprised to learn that there may be water deeper within the Earth than previously thought. Two scientists from The University of Edinburgh and Florida State University (FSU) discovered a high-pressure phase of a mineral that may be able to store water 400 to 600 kilometers, or almost 250 miles to 372 miles, down in Earth’s mantle. Researcher Mainak Mookherjee said the find “opens up a Pandora’s Box for us.” The mineral, brucite, was not thought to be stable so far down in the Earth. But the discovery of what FSU describes as a high-pressure polymorph of brucite has exciting implications for our knowledge of Earth’s interior. Mookherjee said, “We didn’t think water could be stored by hydrous minerals such as brucite. But now that we know it’s there, we need to figure out how much water could be effectively stored inside it…It really is remarkable that such a well-studied mineral as brucite has something so surprising to offer.” Related: Everything we know about the Earth’s mantle is completely wrong Scientists used to think brucite would decompose in deep Earth, and volcanic activity would send the water it once held up to the planet’s surface. But a high-pressure phase of the mineral might not decompose, so brucite may be able to hold water deep down there after all. Mookherjee said what he describes as deep Earth water is just as important as water on Earth’s surface for the planet’s processes. He said, “If the planet becomes dry on the inside, the planet dies because geodynamic activity within the planet ceases.” The scientists will continue to research brucite and will conduct more simulations to determine how its physical properties differ so deep in the Earth. Mookherjee’s ultimate goal is to figure out just how much deep Earth water there is. The journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences recently published the study online. Via Phys.org Images via Florida State University and Wikimedia Commons

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There may be water far deeper in our planet than previously thought

Former subterranean crypt in France transformed into a soothing spa

November 23, 2016 by  
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Italian designer Alberto Apostoli was eager to take on the challenge of converting the basement space into a stylish spa setting. The upper level, where one can receive hair, hand, and face spa treatments, is conventional but chic. Once you descend the staircase to the lower level, you are greeted by a soft, soothing atmosphere, thanks to indirect LED strip lighting. All unsightly elements needed to run the facility are strategically hidden away behind a curtain. Related: 8 abandoned buildings transformed into absolute dream spaces The underground spa’s 270 square meters fit a Finnish sauna , steam bath made almost entirely out of glass, and a space for a hydro massage. Two single rooms and a double room downstairs each feature custom Italian furniture. Throughout the rooms, a black and white color palette is used to accompany the natural stone walls, with a few splashes of gold. “What is especially satisfying in the result is the mix of pre-existing stone and contemporary materials, managed through a thoughtful creative process,” said Apostoli. “The owners trusted us entirely in our thinking and this led to a major achievement from the point of view of consistency in both style and technology.” The spa is near Saint Pierre’s Church and is thought to have served as a crypt hundreds of years ago. With the current transformation, one would never know. + Alberto Apostoli + Atrium Spa & Beauté Images via Alberto Apostoli

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Former subterranean crypt in France transformed into a soothing spa

National Museum of African American History and Culture opens today in Washington, DC

September 24, 2016 by  
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The National Museum of African American History and Culture is the United States’ only national museum devoted to exclusively showcasing African American art, history and culture. Photo: Douglas Remley Adjaye ‘s design adds a striking, three-tiered piece of ornamental architecture to the National Mall. Inspired by Yoruban art from West Africa, where more than half of the 18th century slave trade took place, the building’s form emulates that of the traditional Yoruban wooden caryatid, while the bronzed aluminum panels that clad the structure are informed by the ironwork of African American slaves in 19th century New Orleans. The marriage of these two distinctive cultural influences echoes and supports the museum’s mission . Photo: Michael Barnes In terms of sustainability, the NMAAHC was designed for LEED Gold certification, and will be partially powered by solar panels. RELATED: Architect’s Newspaper sneaks a peek at the National Museum of African American History and Culture Spanning 400,000 square feet, the building’s exhibitions currently feature about 3,500 artifacts–ranging from a former slave’s two story house to Chuck Berry’s convertible–organized into three sections: “Slavery and Freedom”, “The Era of Segregation”, and “1968 and Beyond”. There is also a theater and gallery space for special exhibitions and additional programming. The National Museum of African American History and Culture opens on Saturday, September 24, 2016 . President Obama is expected to speak at the museum’s opening ceremony. + National Museum of African American History and Culture + Freelon Group + Adjaye Associates + Davis Brody Bond + SmithGroupJJR Photos: Darren Bradley , Michael Barnes, Douglas Remley, and the National Museum of African American History and Culture

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National Museum of African American History and Culture opens today in Washington, DC

Researchers discover evidence of supernovae on the sea floor

August 26, 2016 by  
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After a long and dedicated search, scientists believe they have discovered trace elements from supernovae settled on the sea floor. Iron isotopes created from a supernova explosion 2.2 million years ago have found their way into fossilized bacteria taken from a sample of the sea bed floor – the only place they could still be found after all this time. Astrophysicist Shawn Bishop from the Technical University of Munich , Germany, published a new paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences detailing his findings and following up on the hunch he has been following for several years. According to Gizmodo , he used accelerator mass spectrometry to analyze bacteria found in core samples from the ocean floor , counting each and every iron-60 isotope atom he found. Related: NASA captures shockwave of a massive supernova for the first time ever Iron-60, or 60Fe, is one of many elements produced by supernovae during an explosion. After being dispersed around space, these elements eventually settle onto planets. Because of 60Fe’s short half-life, none of it should still be around on Earth. However, traces have been found in fossilized bacteria thought to have picked up the crystals from the sea bed long ago. When the bacteria die, 60Fe remains preserved in the fossil record . Australian National University’s Anton Wallner also published a study  in Nature earlier this year, solidifying the case for supernovae depositing 60Fe on Earth. He and his team estimate the closest explosion occurred about 326 light years away. It is thought that either this event or Bishop’s findings are related to the onset of the Pleistocene, which triggered a period of global cooling. Via Gizmodo Images via Wikimedia , Wikipedia

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Researchers discover evidence of supernovae on the sea floor

Econtainer recycled shipping container bridge provides gateway to Tel-Avivs Ariel Sharon National Park

July 30, 2016 by  
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The architects were inspired by the design of the Ariel Sharon National Park itself, which is a super ambitious project to turn one of the world’s largest garbage dumps into a flourishing green space . The reuse of shipping containers makes perfect sense, as an estimated 800,000 containers are abandoned by the maritime services each year. The use of containers will also save on production, costs and construction time, and the modular units are flexible enough to adapt to any changes required. RELATED: Tel Aviv’s notorious ‘Garbage Mountain’ transforms into world’s largest recycling park Yoav Messer Architects ‘ Econtainer Bridge is made of a continuous line of containers punctuated by balconies that provide space to stop, take a rest and enjoy the gorgeous views on each side. The bridge is set upon four columns, minimizing its impact on the ground. A great (re)use for shipping containers that we haven’t seen before, the Econtainer Bridge will provide access to the park while serving as a destination in its own right. + Yoav Messer Architects + Tel Aviv’s notorious ‘Garbage Mountain’ transforms into world’s largest recycling park Images © Yoav Messer Architects

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Econtainer recycled shipping container bridge provides gateway to Tel-Avivs Ariel Sharon National Park

Unique exhibition in France resurrects Jean Prouv’s lightweight steel structures

June 13, 2016 by  
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The site will become a setting where examples of outstanding industrial heritage will be integrated within a labyrinth of stone walls , part of an old, lead-extracting plant that operated between 1851 and 1925. The exhibition will reference Prouvé’s œuvre and his experiments with lightweight steel structures . Related: Jean Prouvé’s Maison 8×8 Pioneered Affordable Prefab Design Way Back in 1948 Friche de l’Escalette is part of the Parc National des Calanques and is under strict conservation order. Therefore, Touchaleaume’s project will remain modest and simple to avoid disrupting the existing landscape. + Éric Touchaleaume Architecture + Design XXe

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Unique exhibition in France resurrects Jean Prouv’s lightweight steel structures

Crazy low Arctic sea ice levels will likely smash records this summer

June 10, 2016 by  
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Arctic sea ice levels continue to plummet. Researchers from NASA and the National Snow and Ice Data Center tracking sea ice levels have found results that aren’t too surprising: Arctic sea ice extent is likely to break records for the lowest level this summer. Data from May revealed Arctic sea ice extent levels were ” two to four weeks ahead ” of the levels in 2012, the year that currently holds the dubious record. According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center , the “average ice loss” every day in May was around 23,600 square miles. That’s far faster than the 1981-2010 average, which was 18,000 square miles daily. Another factor to take into account is the type of ice . “Multiyear ice” is ice that doesn’t melt and helps keep Arctic ocean temperatures cool. If that ice melts – and it is right now – next winter there will only be “first-year ice” which then melts easier than multiyear ice. If there’s not as much multiyear ice, Arctic ocean temperatures will likely warm. According to Gizmodo, the Arctic is warming up at ” twice the rate ” as other areas on earth. Related: Arctic sea ice levels hit a new winter low – again Are there any weather patterns that can help explain these crazy low numbers? The National Snow and Ice Data Center noted that winds from Alaska and northern Europe bringing “pulses of warm air” led to “hot spots” across the Arctic. Central Siberia was the only area where temperatures were lower than the average recorded between 1981-2010. Then there’s the “early retreat” in the Beaufort Sea of ice – and as more ice melts, the Arctic warms . According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center, the numbers are “tentative” due to the “preliminary nature” of satellite data. However, they’re backed up by other sources, and it’s probable we’ll watch those numbers continue to plummet. Via Gizmodo Images via Land Atmosphere Near-Real Time Capability for EOS (LANCE) System, NASA/GSFC ; W. Meier, NASA ; and National Snow and Ice Data Center

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Crazy low Arctic sea ice levels will likely smash records this summer

Food Rescue Program Fights Food Waste Intelligently

June 10, 2016 by  
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A few years ago, a report was released stating that 40% of food is wasted from farm to fork. This stunning news from the National Resource Defense Council has helped raise awareness of the global food waste crisis, with its many environmental and…

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Food Rescue Program Fights Food Waste Intelligently

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