2020东京奥运会圣火台的设计理念，来源于奥运会&残奥会开闭幕式策划团队的（前）首席执行创意总监 —— 野村万斋的一句话，“全人类聚集在阳光之下，所有人都是平等的，所有人都获得能量”。为了充分体现出这一理念，nendo设计团队总共做了85个草稿雏形，球形的耐热玻璃容器旋转打开，绽放出圣火之花，旨在以抽象的方式表达出圣火与太阳的相似之处。
▼视频，video © nendo
An Olympic Cauldron was designed based on the concept “All gather under the Sun, all are equal, and all receive energy” by Mansai Nomura, who was the Chief Executive Creative Director of the planning team for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics. A total of 85 drafts were made out, from flames trapped in a heat-resistant glass sphere to spinning the flames to create a spherical appearance, in order to express the desired resemblance to the Sun.
The Olympic Cauldron “blooming” at the opening ceremony © Takumi Ota
flames trapped in a heat-resistant glass sphere to spinning the flames to create a spherical appearance © Ikki Yamaguchi
Through trial and error, a spherical form was designed, consisting of upper and lower hemispheres each with five panels representing the Olympic rings. At the end of the Opening Ceremony of the Olympic Games, the cauldron “bloom” to welcome the final torchbearer. This expresses not only the Sun itself, but also the energy and vitality that can be obtained from it, such as plants sprouting, flowers blooming, and hands opening wide toward the sky.
▼2020东京奥运会圣火台，Tokyo2020 Olympic Cauldron © Hiroshi Iwasaki
▼球形圣火台形态，Spherical Cauldron form © Hiroshi Iwasaki
the cauldron consisting of upper and lower hemispheres each with five panels © Hiroshi Iwasaki
圣火火种采用了备受关注的新能源 —— 氢能，由福岛县的某设施生产，该设施也是福岛县自2011年东日本大地震后恢复生产的基础设施之一。制氢过程中电解水所需的电力由太阳能发电提供。由于氢能燃烧后的火焰是无色透明的，肉眼不可见，因此为了充当奥运圣火，必须通过化学反应对火焰进行着色，我们看到的黄色火焰的色彩实际上来源于碳酸钠。
Hydrogen energy, garnering attention as next-generation energy, fuels the flames. The hydrogen was produced at a facility in Fukushima Prefecture, which is undergoing recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake that occurred in 2011. The electricity required for electrolysis of water in the hydrogen production process is provided by solar power generation. Hydrogen burns with a colorless and transparent flame, and is invisible. In order to serve as the Olympic flame, it was necessary to be colored by flame reaction, so sodium carbonate was used for the “yellow” flame.
▼黄色火焰的色彩实际上来源于碳酸钠，sodium carbonate was used for the “yellow” flame © Hiroshi Iwasaki
▼火焰细部，detail of the flame © Hiroshi Iwasaki
details of the cauldron with flame © Ikki Yamaguchi
The amount and direction of the aqueous solution sprayed from the vicinity of the burner were repeatedly examined along with the amount of hydrogen and the angle of the valve, in order to adjust the movement and shape of the flame to shimmer like firewood was stoked; such an attempt to “design flames” was unprecedented.
The polygonal mirror material inside the sphere is designed to increase light reflection © Hiroshi Iwasaki
▼圣火台细部，details of the cauldron © Hiroshi Iwasaki
The cauldron weighs 2.7t, and the diameter after transformation is about 3.5m. The exterior panel, which weighs approximately 40 kg per sheet, was made by cutting out a 10 mm thick aluminum plate; molding it with a special hot press machine capable of applying a pressure of 3500 tons, which only a few exist in Japan; and then milling it. Since distortion occurs when heat is applied during milling, the work was performed at ultra-low speed while consistently scanning the shape using laser, shaping up to 7 mm thickness where strength is required, and down to 4 mm where strength is not required, to accommodate weight reduction. The last phase consisted of adjustments, polishing, and application of heat-resistant paint, all of which were finished by the hands of craftsmen.
▼球形的圣火台重2.7吨，改造后直径约3.5米，The cauldron weighs 2.7t, and the diameter after transformation is about 3.5m © Takumi Ota
The internal drive unit was required to be as compact as possible, yet highly waterproof, fireproof, and heat resistant. By covering the machines with polygonal mirror panels as much as possible, it was intended to create diffused reflection of the lighting from the ceremonies and the flamelight. Tests for heat resistance and wind resistance were repeated, and the apparatus was tuned to prevent any vibration or error even under varying conditions.
it not only represents the sun itself, but also a metaphor for the vitality and energy that the sun brings to people © Ikki Yamaguchi
the cauldron in the night is like a flower of flame © Ikki Yamaguchi
As a result, a smooth movement with fine accuracy in panels passing each other was realized, operating at less than 3 mm distance at the area of narrowest passing width. The Olympic Cauldron thus created through this journey, crystallizes the essence of Japanese manufacturing.
▼设计示意，design concept © nendo
Collaborator : nis, mit, fuk
Photographer : Hiroshi Iwasaki,Takumi Ota, Ikki Yamaguchi