Blog: Secrets from the Chef

Heating mains hatch covers redesigned

Denis KortunovAuthor: Denis Kortunov
27 April 2011

Heating mains hatch covers redesigned

So it happened that we decided to participate in a designers’ competition. At the first glance, there is nothing odd about it, since we are in the industry of design ourselves. The odd part about it is the object of design, which in this case was presented as an iron heating mains hatch cover. The point is that this year marks the 70th anniversary of the Kuibyshevenergo Headquarters — the owner of the heating mains. In order to commemorate this Voljskaya TGK decided to conduct a contest for the best design of hatch covers and later cast some of such anniversary covers in iron.

Annually, during the summer renewal of the heating mains not only miles of piping get replaced but also the heating chambers hatch covers. To honor the anniversary we decided upon placing some special hatch covers this year.

The winner in the competition of hatch cover design will not only see his idea cast in noble iron but also gain a monetary prize. Clearly, a person who makes such a contribution into changing the face of Samara will receive an authored hatch cover as a token of appreciation.

From VoTGK Press Release

The perspective of gaining a hatch cover of our own design as a trophy seemed like a win-win for us. We decided to try our skills in this unusual competition. This is as close as it gets to the industrial design! First we needed an idea. What do we normally see on hatches? A bunch of weird letters and murky pictures?

We decided that we needed to create an exciting design for the citizens and the guests of our city, so that the hatch would speak for Samara and its sights. We drew a couple of versions to really hit it:

Anniversary cover “Globe of Samara” and Game cover “Samara Routes” Anniversary hatch “Globe of Samara”, designed by Vera Ivanchenko-Varlamova (left). Game cover “Samara Routes”, designed by Anastasia Komleva (right).

The vector layouts are not that illustrative, so we decided to make a 3D visualization to make sure we see the cover as they would appear. Let me also tell you some more about each cover.

Game cover “Samara Routes”

Game cover “Samara Routes”

The main purpose of a hatch cover is to keep the well closed. That and not that many secondary functions: it may simply appear nice and shiny and it can serve as a spa for homeless cats. Samara the city was picked as a magic land. It was drawn in accordance with the fairytale traditions. Now every citizen or city guest can place a round or two of “Samara routes” over a nice sunny day. The rules are enclosed… sorry inscribed.

Game cover “Samara Routes” in action Game hatch cover “Samara Routes” in action

We took a tour around the city and made pictures of Samara hatch covers.

Game cover “Samara Routes” Here, for instance, how the cover on Leningradskaya Street would look like

Anniversary cover “Globe of Samara”

Anniversary cover “Globe of Samara”

In the pictorial novel of Nikolay Nosov “Neznaika on the Moon” the Earth’s satellite appears hollow and the ‘moon-dwellers’ live inside the Moon. This undoubtedly remarkable finding inspired us to create a “Globe of Samara”. It goes as simple as this: we draw some very typical Samara’s sights inside the circle that ideally fits the hatch cover. The image may appear somewhat anti-scientific but it does not claim to be a text book either. And it solves the problem of picking the spots worth visiting for the guests of the city.

Anniversary cover “Globe of Samara” We truly believe that nothing like that exists in the heating mains of VoTGK :)

Anniversary cover “Globe of Samara” Fake hatch cover

We really enjoyed working on the covers. It’s not that you get a chance to do something for the city every day. Please keep your fingers crossed for us in this competition!

Project headed by: Denis Kortunov
Designers: Vera Ivanchenko-Varlamova and Anastasia Komleva
Special thanks to: 3D modeling and visualization — Anton Altunian, assistance and good advice — Anton Guglia and Valeriy Namazov

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Nice !

Reply Manu Animalillo Romero, 28 April 2011

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