The design of the conventional high-voltage transmission line towers (aka Electric Pylons) has been with us since the dawn of the modern electric age. Whether it’s urban or rural area, electric pylons are became a part of the modern landscape.

‘Superstring’ is a new type of structure for the high-voltage electric transmission. Considering the extreme conditions of the Icelandic winter, this 27m high parabolic structure (hyperbolic paraboloid) will be prefabricated into pieces for easy transportation and construction. As compared with conventional tower designs this new design takes less space for the footing (only 2 points) and also need fewer components to construct. So it will significantly reduce construction time and efforts. Once the foundation concrete piles are in place, then U shaped prefabricated hinged tube structure will be fixed on top of the foundation. 600mm diameter steel tube will be used for the entire structure with partial reinforcement at the ground with extended fin welded on steel tube. Upper parts of the loop are then inserted to the base structure and when the loop is completed it becomes stable by itself.

The entire structure is balanced by 4 stay wires extended (visually) from the ‘boom in space’ to the ground. This ‘boom in space’ is hanging in the middle of upper part of the loop structure relaying the power lines from both directions. ‘Superstring’s aerodynamic form will not only reduce the wind load, it also allows flex itself to cope with the extreme weather conditions.

Above all, the true beauty of this scheme lies in its formal quality. Elegant parabolic loop structures in the landscape would appears as if musical notes are hung on the staffs. Their shape will change continuously by the angle of the viewers. This will be a case that the most mundane utility infrastructures can transformed into a ‘Land Art’ and to become a part of the nature. This certainly adds another spectacle over already breathtaking Icelandic landscape.

Words by Sebastian J of  Arch Daily.

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