"Solar Sunflower" Collectors Lend Credibility to "Solar Farm"

Illustration for article titled Solar Sunflower Collectors Lend Credibility to Solar Farm

In the spot where the old Robert Mueller airport used to be, the city of Austin is building, among other things, a solar farm made of these contest-winning, 16-foot-high "sunflower" style solar collectors.

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The collectors aren't active yet, but when they're switched on they'll be used to power lights for a nearby hiking and biking trail. They're 16 feet high and 14 feet across (at the "flower," presumably) and are being viewed as both an art installation and a greening initiative. As Austin Council Member Lee Leffingwell shamelessly brags, "Our city has a great understanding of how art can transform public spaces." Yeah? Well, our site has a great understanding of sweet giant metal flowers, too. [MAKE]

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DISCUSSION

The structures themselves have been up for at least a year, I always thought they were supposed to represent radar dishes in tribute to the airport that's now a shopping center and low cost housing.

Those solar panels weren't there when I drove by last week :P I think it was made purely as an art installation, and then later on it was realized "hey! These things are basically begging to have solar panels installed!"