Let It Rain, Let It Shine, Let It Snow: San Jose Airport Sculpture Predicts Weather Patterns

Travel News — By Zain Iqbal on December 29, 2010 at 5:56 pm

This past weekend the East Coast of the United States was hammered with one of the biggest snowstorms of 2010. From Virginia Beach to Boston, snow fell for most of Sunday blanketing powder at a rate of upwards of 2 to 3 inches per hour. Of course, transportation was totally snarled; at one point all three major airports around New York City — LaGuardia, JFK, and Newark — were shut down and even the NYC subway system was affected. Meanwhile, on the West Coast, if you were waiting for an outbound flight out of San Jose International Airport, you could monitor the blizzard on a new art installation: eCLOUD.

This super-cool sculpture takes data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and displays it through different shaped crystal squares that hang from the ceiling of the airport. According to Flowing Data.com, the squares “behave” just like the weather in an given city:

When it’s raining, the eCLOUD appears to be dropping, while in a city that has hazy skies, the display feel slow and lazy. Stormy weather shows a busy cloud, bouncing around wildly.

The secret behind all this are liquid crystal displays; we didn’t quite understand it at first, but this video explains the process quite nicely:

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/15314553[/vimeo]

Like Denver International Airport, LAX, and SFO, this is just another example of how airports are using artistic installations to make points of transit a little more interesting.

Image: Perfecto Insecto/Flickr

Tags: San Jose International Airport, SJC, Weather Sculptures

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