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Think Green

Photonics Spectra
Aug 2008
David L. Shenkenberg

Just in time for the Olympics, one of the world’s largest LED displays has arrived in Beijing, and it’s also one of the world’s most environmentally friendly because the sun powers the entire display.

New York architecture firm Simone Giostra & Partners and London-based building engineers Arup Associates designed the massive display, which they call the GreenPix media wall. It opened to the public June 24 and has featured video performances by renowned artists.

The wall boasts a mind-boggling 2292 LEDs covering 24,000 square feet, all powered by solar cells implemented with the assistance of German manufacturers Schüco and Sunways AG. The display collects solar energy during the day to power the LEDs at night.

The collaborators arranged the sun-powered batteries in various densities that allow more light to enter and be converted into electricity to power the LEDs. The design also enables more heat to dissipate. To protect the solar cells from the outside environment, they used a new manufacturing process to seal the batteries within the glass on the exterior of the structure.

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Images reprinted with permission of Simon Giostra & Partners and Arup Associates.


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