2011 Skyscraper Competition
Milorad Vidojević, Jelena Pucarević, Milica Pihler
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a pile of plastic floating in the northern part of the Pacific Ocean. The San Francisco Chronicle claims that the patch now weights more than 3.5 million tons, 80% of which is plastic waste that reaches more than thirty meters in depth. This area of the Pacific Ocean is a relatively calm region that causes the accumulation of floating garbage in big piles. Its removal will cost billions of dollars and no country claims responsibility.
This proposal consists of a series of underwaterscrapers, floating islands that will be used to remove and recycle the garbage patch. These are self-sustained structures organized by function hierarchy with four communication cores that connect three main programs – collectors at the bottom, recycling plant in the middle levels, and housing and recreational levels atop.
Considering that the size of the floating garbage island is constantly varying, the structural organization of the skyscraper should reflect these variations. The main hole in the structure would adjust the mass of the underwaterskyscraper while keeping the volume constant. Fluctuations in the amount of trash in the landfill (located in the lower part of the structure) would be adjusted by adding or releasing water, so that the weight to volume ratio is appropriate for floatation.
Because most of the molecules found in the garbage have high energy, the waste will be heated in the recycling chamber and converted into a gas that will be stored in massive battery like structures.