Life Viganella-mirror4

Published on March 2nd, 2012 | by Steven Hodson


Italian Village Tired Of Being In The Dark Builds Its Own Sun [Video]

There is a small village in Italy called Viganella and it is plagued by a rather peculiar problem – from mid-November until early February the whole town is completely in the dark.

Now I don’t mean in the dark as not knowing what is going on in the world but rather, well … it’s in the dark. You see the village is located at the bottom of a very deep valley and surrounded on all sides by very high mountains. So depending on where the sun spends most of it time on its celestial path the village spends a portion of the time without any direct sunlight.

Then in 2006 along comes architect and sundial designer Giacomo Bonzani with a brilliant idea – the town should make its own sun for those dark times.

Of course he didn’t to literally make their own sun but rather a giant mirror that is positioned on the slopes of a mountainside above Viganella and reflects the sunlight into the town.

A place that had not seen the sun’s rays during the winter since the beginning of time, was now suddenly bathed in its glorious light and warmth. The mirror is 40 square meters in size, 8 meters wide by 5 meters high and is located about 870 meters above the village. What’s more, it is actually controlled by a computer software that tracks the sun and tilts and turns the panels of the mirror so that the rays are always reflected downwards. It has actually become a tourist attraction of sorts, since its installation over 5 years ago.

via Oddity Central

Here’s some images of the work as it was being put together and a town that now gets sunlight where it never did before.



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About the Author

Steven has been around the tech world long enough to see most of the stuff we think of cool happen before which leads to a certain bit of cynicism that has contributed to him being known as the cranky old fart of the Internet. Besides sharing some of the goodness that he finds with you here at 42x you can also find him curating some digital goodness at Winextra (tech type stuff) and Rotten Gumdrops (for your daily dose of WTF).

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