Moisture Vaporators?

Luke Skywalker and a droid beside a moisture vaporator. Image from STAR WARS - EPISODE IV - A NEW HOPE © Lucasfilm, Ltd.

By now those of you who have stayed with me for the past few blog entries are all too aware of my affection for STAR WARS. Given the nature of this site (architecture), some of you might even question the rationale behind some or even all of those posts. But it's really quite simple. Architecture is the creation of a memorable environment. Similarly, a film set is also the creation of a memorable environment. Sure, film sets are more temporary by nature, but when done well, they can be every bit as memorable as a real building. The STAR WARS films have many examples of this.

However, I suspect you want something more tangible; something that you can directly relate to this planet. How about a real life moisture vaporator? In the original STAR WARS film, we find Luke Skywalker living on his uncle's moisture farm, maintaining and protecting a collection of vaporators that pull water out of the air. That's the stuff of science fiction or space fantasy ... until now.

The WarkaWater project conceived by industrial designer/architect Arturo Vittori and his colleague Andreas Vogler at the firm Architecture And Vision is a real world version of the STAR WARS moisture vaporator. As explained on their site:

'WarkaWater'  is a project conceived for the mountainous regions in Ethiopia, where women and children walk several hours to collect water. To ease this dramatic condition, the studio ‘Architecture and Vision’ is developing the project ‘WarkaWater’ which is harvesting potable water from the air and honors the disappearing Ethiopian warka trees. The 9 m tall bamboo framework has a special fabric hanging inside capable to collect potable water from the air by condensation. The lightweight structure is designed with parametric computing, but can be built with local skills and materials by the village inhabitants.

I didn't find any mention of vaporators or STAR WARS on their site, but given that Arturo was born in 1971 (same as myself), I would be extremely surprised if he wasn't also inspired by that film.

You can read more about the WarkaWater project at this link. They have also uploaded a short video to youtube....