Eclipse

Glass actuaded speaker

For this project, we worked with a client that develops proprietary technology transforming glass facades into noise-cancelling systems. To get the product to market, they asked our team to develop a glass actuated speaker. Over a six-month period, the team developed a vision, did research using new technologies, and designed and built a fully functional prototype. The result is a novel speaker, consisting of just glass and a control unit.

The client used proprietary technology which had not been tested for the application of being a musical speaker. Various sheets of glass covering a range of different thicknesses were rigorously tested, recorded and analysed from which we subsequently could make design decisions. In addition, glass has both resonant and optical material characteristics. To get the most out of the optical aspect of glass, all kinds of different light interactions were researched. The most promising was a gradient from fully frosted at the top, to fully transparent at the bottom.

During the prototyping phase, I designed a comprehensive wiring schematic. In order to make the prototype visually representative, extra care was put towards space optimisation and sensor placement. In addition, I wrote software for wireless troubleshooting and updating. In the end, everything was brought together after months of preparation. Due to careful planning and project structuring, almost everything went according to plan. It required surgical precision, but the prototype was 100% functional.

The Eclipse was specifically designed for the user to come up and interact with it. The Eclipse is designed to act as a conversation starter. Users are able to explore musical control on the central circle, and light control on the spoke and outer circle. Modes include responding to audio levels, producing dynamic lighting, displaying colours on a full-range hue circle, and being a static light. There is a perfectly balanced user experience between on the one hand the novel character of the Eclipse, and on the other, intuitive control for the user. All in a minimalist and invisible design.