WOW – Wonder of Water

A water feature made up of multiple challenges to demonstrate water power now and then, with an iconic attrctive sculptural multi-sensory central feature - supported by Scan It

Scénario utilisateur

Visitors approaching WOW will see two large waterwheels sitting in a larger water feature. One of the water wheels is powered via water from a header tank that collects rainwater. Visitors can also pump water into the header tank during dry days. Visitors can observe that as this waterwheel turns, it works a bellow that fans a fire.  Visitors can power the other water wheel by cranking it up. This second waterwheel acts as a dynamo and generates electricity to power LED lights.

Surrounding this central sculpture is a mixture of Rube Goldberg style water circuits made up of different water raising and reaction mechanisms. These mechanisms will be drawn from the range of mechanisms that appear in the collections of the gallery (e.g. Pelton wheel and bicycles). There are also sections with hands-on challenges and experiments such as different boat widths with weights for visitors to test which vessels can carry the most weight and a series of dams and locks.

Intentions & Processes

We want to create a new, fun and informative interactive water exhibit for Enginuity. Our intention is to reach the family audience and particularly Key Stage 2 children, but ultimately visitors of all ages. Our objective is to create an exhibit that will deliver a source of learning in a fun way linked to the main story of innovation and ironmaking in Coalbrookdale.

A reliable source of water was essential to the iron industry. At Coalbrookdale water provided power to convert iron ore into finished iron goods. The water was stored in purpose built pools and channelled via sluices and underground to the ironworks in the valley.

Following a brainstorming session and detailed discussion including many idea changes and with input from the Coaches, the concept was finalised. Our exhibit will take on board the principles of water storage and regulated flow to enable the visitor to generate power from releasing the potential energy to form kinetic energy in a series of fun and informative ways. The only problem with the concept was what to leave out. The ideas session created a wealth of potential interactives including capturing the leaking rainwater from the roof of Enginuity! This idea has been shelved for the purpose of this exercise, but could be investigated further when time allows.

Outils et techniques

•  MATERIALS – INITIAL PROTOTYPE – Paper, cardboard, sticky tape, glue, art straws

• MATERIALS – WORKING PROTOTYPE – MDF, acrylic, wood, plastic, electrical components, metal wheel and waste  bin, Pivoting brackets,

• DIGITAL – QR Code set-up with link to video footage on basic water wheel construction
Graphic Design – logotype concept, Abode Illustrator documents for visual and fabrication purposes

• DIGITAL FABRICATION – 3D Printer and Laser Cutter


Team Engi-NEW-ity:

Lucy Rogers – Fabrication

Michelle Davies – Content Expertise

Barbara Taylor – Graphics

Clara Lim – UX Design/Narrative Environment/Fabrication

Fein Van Houtven – UX Design/Narrative Environment/Fabrication

Stephen Cumberland – Communication