The lack of cooling in large open areas inevitably sends people scurrying for air-conditioned buildings on hot days.
Taking a leaf from traditional Islamic architecture that dealt with the harsh desert climate with Mashrabiyas – a projecting latticework window that provides shade from the hot sun while allowing cool air from the street to flow through – London-based design firm PostlerFeruson has designed a kind of three dimensional Mashrabiya that can cool the immediate area in an energy-free way.
The three-dimensional cooling towers, called Microclimates, are made from sand using a 3D-printing technique developed by UK company d-shape that takes a CAD file and deposits sand, along with an inorganic binder, in layers to build a three-dimensional structure from the bottom up. By extending the latticework design in three dimensions results in the internal structure of the towers having a large internal surface area. This, coupled with water fed into the top of the structures, efficiently cools the air passing through it using evaporative cooling.