Water is the basis of life, and with new technology developed in MIT’s Media Lab, it’s also the newest medium for interactive sculpture.
HydroMorph was developed by Ken Nakagaki, Pasquale Totaro, Jim Peraino, Thariq Shihipar, Chantine Akiyama, Yin Shuang, and Hiroshi Ishii. They were “inspired by the membrane formed when a water stream hits a smooth surface (e.g., a spoon).”
In order to manipulate water, they created the perfect dome membrane. With the use of 10 water-blocking modules and an aerial camera they were able to morph the dome into a variety of shapes. A camera above the mechanism not only captures these transformations but allows for the membrane to detect physical objects around it.
See the dome transform from a flower, to a butterfly, to a bird, as well as how it intelligently identifies objects—directing its stream to fill multiple cups.
This technology can be used for more than unique fountains. There are practical applications as well. If the HydroMorph were used as a faucet it could redirect hot water away from the hands of unsuspecting children.
Learn more about the project here.