With the World Cup all set to begin on June 11 in South Africa, feast your eyes on this beautiful technological marvel: Cape Town Stadium. It will seat 69,070 fans, all of whom will no doubt scream at the top of their lungs at all the excitement on the field. But thanks to some clever engineering, the people living nearby will hear hardly a peep. This is South Africa’s first completely soundproof stadium.
The open-air stadium sits in Cape Town’s tiny Green Point neighborhood, where residents had raised concerns about crowd noise. To keep fans’ cheers to a minimum outside the building, a design team from the German engineering firm Schlaich Bergermann topped the structure with the world’s largest glass ceiling. The 398,265-square-foot roof consists of 9,000 half-inch-thick glass panels, arranged in a ring above the stands, and a Teflon and fiberglass mesh suspended below the glass. Together they reflect the crowd’s roar back onto the field and stands (potentially handing an advantage to the team with the loudest cheering section) to prevent noise from escaping through the roof’s central hole.
The roof will also protect fans from the Cape Town’s notoriously unpredictable weather. Such fickle weather is the result of wind kicked up by the nearby convergence of two major ocean currents: warm from the Indian Ocean and cold from the Atlantic. Combined with turbulent winds spilling off the city’s Table Mountain, gusts can reach more than 50 miles an hour. The roof’s concave shape deflects the wind and redirects it around the stadium. We’re totally psyched to watch live games in this awesome architectural wonder.
Source: Popular Science.