In 2007, the Guinness Book of Records awarded The Mercedes-Benz Museum for recognition for housing the “strongest artificially generated tornado in the world.” The 37.2 yards high vortex was not designed as an attraction, but to channel smoke out of the building in the event of a fire.
If a fire occurred, 144 outlets located along the core walls inject air into the interior courtyard of the Mercedes-Benz Museum. This generates an artificial tornado, and the smoke collected is then discharged into the outside air via a smoke elimination ventilator located in the upper part of the building.
“By successfully achieving the world record as ‘strongest artificially generated tornado in the world’, the Mercedes-Benz Museum has once again underlined its outstanding position in the world of museums also in terms of architecture,” said Michael Bock, manager of Mercedes-Benz Museum GmbH.
However, due to the open-plan structure of the Mercedes-Benz Museum, the various exhibition areas are connected to each other without any fire zones via an interior courtyard and ramps. From the perspective of smoke elimination this presented a challenging task that could not be implemented through conventional fluid mechanics. It was necessary to take a new approach, and so a globally unique smoke elimination system was developed especially for the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Germany.
Alex has written for Vanity Fair, Barrons, Bloomberg and Condé Nast Traveler.