︎︎︎NIKOLA SORMAZ


From its conception in 1800 the battery has had an immense impact on both the production and consumption of electricity. In a world driven by consumption we find ourselves at a crossroads. A time of change, a paradigm shift.

As we look toward cleaner ways of energy production and distribution, this scheme suggests the solution lies in the essence of the hum-ble battery. From recent ventures by power operators to create utility scale batteries to help large scale distribution across populations and cities, we are seeing a redefining and recoding of the traditional battery. No longer can the batter be considered an object of com-fort, mobility, source, representation, renewability, mediation or storage. It must now be defined as a producer and distributor.

Through the use of a combined Anaerobic digestor and Flow battery system, the project aims to propose a new identity for the battery. One which shifts its role from the passive storage device, to a means of dynamic energy production. In turn creating an architecture of the Intra. On a larger scale the battery is now able to define itself as a mediator and system of exchange for the shift away from fossil fuel power production and the shift toward clean carbon free power distribution and production.

The project system takes inspiration from the recent research developments in Flow Batteries. A dynamic storage device involving the use of two terminal electrolyte fluids. A City Block scale anaerobic digestor is used to source energy from bio-waste created by the exist-ing buildings and use of the adjacent buildings, this energy is then lead through the flow battery which stores it for future use. In order to store the energy the battery electrolyte fluid needs to flow through the battery terminals, this flow then spins a turbine which is connected to an alternator which ultimately creates a cycle of energy production through the means of dynamic storage. In short, we are creating and producing energy by the way we are storing it.

The scheme then becomes a mediator between a power producing device and a power storing device, this language of exchange between these two polar ends of the spectrum is applied to the chosen site of the Golden Square Carpark, as a means of testing.
The scheme will analyse and question the impact of mediation on a single building, dedicating space and form to particular elements, while removing it from others, a thorough investigation into the give and take of architecture.

Through the identified mechanics of the library: Acquire, Organise, Preserve and Access means of exchange are identified Transaction, Direct, Replicate, Lend which link to the characteristics of identity seen within a battery: Separator, Terminal, Casing, Insulator. This lateral reading and approach to the projects schematic design allows for a truer understanding and decomposition of the mechanical elements of the system at play, one which is less concerned with hierarchy and more concerned with form.

These terms inspire moments and spaces which combine to assemble the proposed project, a true amalgamation of identity and ex-change. This poses the question as to how we see and operate as architects, to see the project not as a beginning or an end but rather as a mediator, a means of exchange.