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London 2012 Olympic Cauldron...


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Wow, lots of posts since I've been gone. This thread is becoming really, really active.

Perhaps my description of the War of the Worlds like structure was a bit over the top, lol. After your idea, the canals remain on my shortlist of suspect Cauldron spots. About the wires, the complexity of the flying wires network suspended now above the arena are visible in these photos, including their outboard anchor points in the first photo and the inner ones.

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1254970_M01.jpg

JasonHawkes-9837_xlarge.jpg

Well, that is quite the intricate network of wires. I'm actually astounded at the beauty of that outer circle of wires suspended in mid-air. That being said, there are gaps in the wires. I agree with many of you who say that the cauldron won't be flying up somehow through the top of the stadium. So that leaves 2 options: 1) the cauldron will be lit in the stadium and then be moved after the OC or 2) the cauldron will be outside the stadium and will be lit during the OC somehow.

For option 2, a person "flying" up to light the cauldron is too reminiscent of Beijing, so I think that's out. The only other options are either an indirect lighting like Turin (I really hope not) or they've devised an original way to get the flame to the cauldron. Can anyone think of any uniquely British flying objects or methods that may make this happen?

Bra' Tac and any others interested, just found this Jason Hawkes photo showing a close-up of the top of the Orbit from this different overhead angle.

It's interesting that the large metal loop, which I thought previously was looped directly above the centre of the Tower, in reality bends off to one side. This is a bit of a surprise.

I was looking for any clues in photos all around and inside the Stadium, including the Orbit and any signs of it's possible participation in the OC in a minor or major role through such effects as lighting, fireworks or other theatrical gadgetry. Setting aside the "Heatherwick Cauldron-versus-Orbit-design-clash" argument for the moment, Bra-Tac what do you make of this tower structure?

Despite what the Director of the Olympic Park is quoted as saying about gaslines and Cauldron locations, I do find it odd and questionable that he appears to be saying there are no gaslines in the Orbit Tower at all. I would have thought that a restaurant in a prominent tourist tower like this would need gaslines leading to it, since most restaurants anywhere cook on gas stoves, not electric - unless its going to simply be a coffee shop style operation with no freshly cooked food.

Does anyone know of the type of restaurant that will be in this tower?

OrbitTopJasonHawkes-9783_xlarge.jpg

I don't know much about the Orbit, other than it does look like a twisted roller coaster (at night it looks wonderful, though). From my understanding, the restaurant up top is supposed to be fine dining, so I'd assume they'd bring gas into the kitchen (but they may be able to make do with an electric stove). Based on the picture, I see no outlets for gas to come out, but they may not have topped it off with the cauldron yet (although I doubt that's what will occur). They could have run gas pipes within the pipes of the structure itself, but that doesn't seem likely for structural safety reasons (or perhaps the whole thing is a network of gas pipes and it'll explode and turn into the cauldron :P ).

From what I've heard about the tower (it not being built by the London Olympic Committee, denials of it being the cauldron, and it not being designed by Heatherwick), I don't think it'll be the cauldron, but it could still be used as part of the OC, particularly for fireworks. And in that one picture in this forum from within the stadium showing The Orbit's looping looming above the stadium, the loop didn't even reach above the floodlights. They would need to top it off with something substantial to allow a lot of people to see it inside the stadium. That square opening in the middle does intrigue me, though. Perhaps they'll build something extending out from it? It doesn't look like the tower was built for that additional weight, though.

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I just had a really awesome idea that would be quite different from all other lighting ceremonies. Unfeasible with the network of wires above the stadium and for numerous other reasons, but just an imaginative idea.

Imagine this:

The olympic torch enters the stadium. As it's passed to the last torch bearer, he lights something on the ground. The flame travels in a spoke like pattern outwards toward the edge of the stage in between the athletes.

In the athlete's goodie bags is a pouch. They're told to open it. It's a flying lantern, like the ones in this pic:

iebQr.jpg

Inside the pouch is also a mini olympic torch. The athletes near the flaming olympic trenches begin to light their torches, in turn lighting others' torches, and so on. They then light their lanterns and are told to hold them.

In the middle of the stage a HUGE lantern appears. As it is lit with the olympic flames, it is let go to fly up. It of course has a rope that will prevent it from flying away. The athletes release their lanterns, which have strings with weights as well. All the lanterns rise, creating a massive olympic "cauldron".

The big lantern will remain as the permanent cauldron and will be moved outside the stadium and attached to a gas line to always have fuel.

Now, I know that this has a lot of issues in general. The main problem is unpredictable weather, but also safety.

But still, wouldn't this be awesome? Every athlete would feel as if they helped light the olympic cauldron. Now that would be a unique experience!

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Nice idea but that's very much an eastern/Asian festival practice. In China, Japan and Taiwan they have those 'releasing the souls' lantern festivals exactly as you describe.

However, I think the London Fire Marshall is going to get plenty nervous with so many flames floating around.

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I just had a really awesome idea that would be quite different from all other lighting ceremonies. Unfeasible with the network of wires above the stadium and for numerous other reasons, but just an imaginative idea.

Imagine this:

The olympic torch enters the stadium. As it's passed to the last torch bearer, he lights something on the ground. The flame travels in a spoke like pattern outwards toward the edge of the stage in between the athletes.

In the athlete's goodie bags is a pouch. They're told to open it. It's a flying lantern, like the ones in this pic:

iebQr.jpg

Inside the pouch is also a mini olympic torch. The athletes near the flaming olympic trenches begin to light their torches, in turn lighting others' torches, and so on. They then light their lanterns and are told to hold them.

In the middle of the stage a HUGE lantern appears. As it is lit with the olympic flames, it is let go to fly up. It of course has a rope that will prevent it from flying away. The athletes release their lanterns, which have strings with weights as well. All the lanterns rise, creating a massive olympic "cauldron".

The big lantern will remain as the permanent cauldron and will be moved outside the stadium and attached to a gas line to always have fuel.

Now, I know that this has a lot of issues in general. The main problem is unpredictable weather, but also safety.

But still, wouldn't this be awesome? Every athlete would feel as if they helped light the olympic cauldron. Now that would be a unique experience!

Actually, this could totally work in London.

The athletes toward the edge of the stage would have shorter strings for their lanterns. The length of the string gets longer for athletes toward the center of the stage. So the athlete lanterns would "build up" sort of like a mountain up to the center of the wires above the stadium. Then on top of the of all the hanging wires is the large lantern "cauldron". As the athlete lanterns rise, creating the rising mountain, it "lights" the main lantern, which begins to soar above the stadium, visible for miles and for everyone inside.

It would take a lot of planning and coordination, but it's feasible. Weather is still the biggest issue, though.

Nice idea but that's very much an eastern/Asian festival practice. In China, Japan and Taiwan they have those 'releasing the souls' lantern festivals exactly as you describe.

However, I think the London Fire Marshall is going to get plenty nervous with so many flames floating around.

The releasing of lanterns is actually done in numerous countries in Europe as well. For me, it doesn't seem like an eastern practice, but perhaps to others it does.

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Well, we had that speculation a couple of times before already. After someone mentioned here recently that the stadium's roof is rather fragile and had to be carefully balanced, we can probably exclude any kind of cauldron sitting on the roof. And I somehow don't see a Heatherwick cauldron attached to some other structure - not to the Orbit nor to one of those floodlights

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Im off to the Heatherwick exhibition next week at the V&A, apparently there is a spare plinth where the cauldron model will go.

I read an article where he was interviewed where he said his work was all about answering specific questions. The reporter asked what was the question he asked himself when designing the cauldron? His response. If he told us the question it would be give the cauldron game away totally LOL

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I was looking through the Torch Relay thread and saw this tweet posted from almost year and a half ago about the cauldron:

I picked up good bit of info today' date=' which I think is exclusive. London Olympic flame won't be in Stadium. On separate structure alongside[/quote']

Source, Twitter account of The BBC's James Pearce: https://twitter.com/...556188820422656

Obviously wondering if plans haven't changed...

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I was looking through the Torch Relay thread and saw this tweet posted from almost year and a half ago about the cauldron:

Source, Twitter account of The BBC's James Pearce: https://twitter.com/...556188820422656

Obviously wondering if plans haven't changed...

I'm inclined to believe that. Davey, we'll be curious to see what you find at the V&A, though perhaps they will leave that spot empty until after the Games have begun....

I expect the cauldron to be good. Generally I really like Heatherwick.

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I've been an interested reader of this forum for the last week or so. The 'where's the cauldron gonna be' puzzle is fascinating. Reading through all the posts now is a daily addiction for me. Like the rest of you I am very curious as to where the cauldron will be. The zoomable hi rez panoramic image taken at the 2012 hours to go event might yield some clues (assuming the cauldron is inside the stadium). You can get to the image at http://2012hourstogo.panoramic-imaging.com/

In pulling all the information together from the preceding 72 pages I have a hunch that:

1. The use of triangles is significant (triangular torch signifying third time the Games have been in London)

2. The mechanism supporting/holding the cauldron could feasibly be outside the stadium (the roof seems too well balanced already to support a further structure) yet the cauldron will be seen inside the stadium and possibly from elsewhere in the park too

3. The London 2012 planning document identifies the footprint of the cauldron being outside the stadium at some stage

Is it beyond the realm of engineering that some sort of lean, triangular, cantilevered structure with a gas line running through it and secured by cables (like anchoring tent guylines) outside the stadium at the north end [PDF of Park Map] could suspend the cauldron over the roof and make it appear that the cauldron is floating in the air within the stadium?

I was looking through the Torch Relay thread and saw this tweet posted from almost year and a half ago about the cauldron:

Source, Twitter account of The BBC's James Pearce: https://twitter.com/...556188820422656

Obviously wondering if plans haven't changed...

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If the caludron is outside the stadium as the original poject states, How is gonna be lit?

are they gonna make fly someone again till get the cauldron?? Or in a firework display?

I imagine sth like this. Remember the Queen Baton for Commonweatlh Games in 2002 entered the stadium haging out in a gas ball with a dancer that carried it...

Sth similar is gonna happen? I mean, sth related to "fly"?

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That small circular podium on the stage at the northern end of the stadium I was thinking might be

- either simply a podium to highlight a performer/singer during the OC and/or

- it might telescope upwards to lift the final torchbearer up between a gap in the wires to a position to light a Cauldron or a fuse/device which leads directly to the Cauldron (?).

rttg.jpg

I don't think so. I think that circular shape is part of the movable stage for artist to come up and down the field... As in recent ceremonies have donde so...

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In pulling all the information together from the preceding 72 pages I have a hunch that:

1. The use of triangles is significant (triangular torch signifying third time the Games have been in London)

2. The mechanism supporting/holding the cauldron could feasibly be outside the stadium (the roof seems too well balanced already to support a further structure) yet the cauldron will be seen inside the stadium and possibly from elsewhere in the park too

3. The London 2012 planning document identifies the footprint of the cauldron being outside the stadium at some stage

Is it beyond the realm of engineering that some sort of lean, triangular, cantilevered structure with a gas line running through it and secured by cables (like anchoring tent guylines) outside the stadium at the north end [PDF of Park Map] could suspend the cauldron over the roof and make it appear that the cauldron is floating in the air within the stadium?

1) I never realized that 3 would be so significant, but now that you mention it, I have to think it will play some part. So many triangles in just the stadium itself. There seems to have been some forethought that went into the stadium, so I hope they considered the cauldron and lighting somehow as well.

2) I'm pretty convinced the cauldron structure will be anchored outside the stadium. The are to the north of the stadium seems like the most likely location based on all that we've gathered in this forum (including your 3rd point).

I would say that it's not beyond the realm of engineering for a cantilevered structure. My first idea (not saying that I came up with it first) for the structure rising out of the canals would actually form a triangle (I should really try to sketch out what my idea is).

I have 2 worries though (the first relates specifically to the canal idea):

1) The canals are actually quite far from the stadium (based on aerial photos). That would require quite a large structure for it to be visible in the stadium, and especially if you want something to cantilever down into the stadium.

2) The network of wires above the stadium is quite restrictive. Based on the panoramic photo you provided (thanks for that!), I can say that the stage at the north end will not be able to rise up to the edge of the roof. You can see a large bundle of wires above the stage in the panorama.

Also, I agree that the pods to the north are probably some cover-up. They're standing right on the location of the supposed gas lines. Can't be a coincidence (I guess it could be, but where would be the fun in that?).

I'll try to draw up a sketch of my cantilevered cauldron canal structure this weekend (Warning: I am not a good artist, and the drawings will most likely be horrible and may cause you permanent brain damage. You've been warned.)

P.S. Paul65, my name is also Paul (haven't mentioned it before, though). This may get confusing when reading the forums from now on. :P

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Does anybody thing that the cauldron will look anything like the one cauldron being used for the torch relay?

http://www.flickr.com/photos/daseiserneskreuz/7310383854/

I know that the cauldron for the relay seldom if ever resembles the cauldron during the games, but is there a chance that London will break with tradition??

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Thanks for the welcome AustralianFan and bra'tac. I just happened to notice in the image below that there appears to be a new 'ledge' added to the rim of the roof. It isn't visible in the Hi Rez panoramic image from the 2012 hours to go event a month ago so must be a recent addition. Question is whether it has some alignment with the 'stage' under it and then what bearing that might have on things.

That small circular podium in the Northern stands, as shown below, reminds me of the one that rose vertically upwards during the Sydney Closing Ceremony and brought Nikki Webster up and close to the Cauldron.

If the London Cauldron structure was outside the Stadium, or even cantilevered from outside the northern end of the stadium and 'floating' over and above the centre of the stadium (see Paul65's post), then in these cases the final torchbearer is probably going to have to be in an elevated position in order to light it directly or some sort of fuse device leading to it.

The gaps in the flying wires network appear to be bigger at the outer edge of the stadium, ie possibly directly above that stage in the northern stands just in front of the jumbotron and scoreboard.

croppedzoomedjhinsidestadium.jpg

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Hi bra'tac/Paul

I'm not sure but the pods may be a gas line red herring. Having taken a look on Google Earth I counted six of them around the stadium.

I'm not wedded to the idea but the cantilevered option over the roof from outside seems most likely.

A friend of mine who did the bus tour in Sept 2010 said that the cauldron would be between the four floodlight gantries (in the 11, 12, 1 and 2 o'clock positions - orientating 12 o'clock at the lighting gantry on the North end of the stadium. Then the press will sit facing it and to the left of it. Some members of the public will have to sit under and alongside it to the right, so they won't get decent pics of it - then again that was the case in Beijing too.

Question is would they have settled on the location in Sept 2010 before they had appointed Heatherwick?

Interestingly I came across this 20 Feb 2011 article in The Architects' Journal

Designer Thomas Heatherwick is drawing up plans for the Olympic Cauldron centrepiece at the London 2012 Games

The cauldron, which will house the Olympic torch throughout the event, will break from traditional and be built outside the main stadium, on a plot just north of the arena (see attachments).

The tower will be between 70m-150m tall and be visible inside the Populous-designed stadium.

According to statements made back in 2009, the flame will be fuelled by waste/sustainable wood.

A spokesman for the Heatherwick Studio said: ‘Thomas Heatherwick is really excited to have been asked to be part of this critical piece of London’s 2012 Olympics.’

Heatherwick’s much-acclaimed Shanghai Expo Pavilion is currently shortlisted for a Brit Insurance Design Award. His redesigned London Routemaster bus is also expected to start operation before the 2012 Games.

The cauldron is not expected to be revealed until the opening day of the Games on 27 July 2012

Also, I agree that the pods to the north are probably some cover-up. They're standing right on the location of the supposed gas lines. Can't be a coincidence (I guess it could be, but where would be the fun in that?).

I'll try to draw up a sketch of my cantilevered cauldron canal structure this weekend (Warning: I am not a good artist, and the drawings will most likely be horrible and may cause you permanent brain damage. You've been warned.)

P.S. Paul65, my name is also Paul (haven't mentioned it before, though). This may get confusing when reading the forums from now on. :P

Just to clarify - the press would look over to the left to see it. They'd actually be sitting to the right of the cauldron of it were to be where the bus tour said it would be. Sorry if I confused anyone.

A friend of mine who did the bus tour in Sept 2010 said that the cauldron would be between the four floodlight gantries (in the 11, 12, 1 and 2 o'clock positions - orientating 12 o'clock at the lighting gantry on the North end of the stadium. Then the press will sit facing it and to the left of it. Some members of the public will have to sit under and alongside it to the right, so they won't get decent pics of it - then again that was the case in Beijing too.

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Very interesting information, Paul. Thanks and welcome!

Two questions:

1) So did they talk about a cauldron tower outside the stadium on that bus tour or about a cauldron sitting on the stadium's roof? If the latter is the case, the position you describe probably is the one near the bridge in the northeast of the stadium, between that row of four catering pods in the north east and the block eight catering pods in the north.

2) Are you a subscriber to the Architects' Journal? It's because I can't open that article, only subscribers can do that. I was curious about the attachments they mention in the article. However, very interesting information as well -- even if there are two strange things in it: First, they mention a height of the cauldron between 70 and 150 metres, which is a strangely huge span. But at least now I know where that information came from about a cauldron tower being 150 metres high -- I picked that up in the SkycraperCity forum last year. ;) 150 metres is huge, though, and not very realistic.

And the second strange thing is that they say that the cauldron won't be unveiled before the Games' opening day. So how does one want to hide a big tower unless it's built on opening day itself or is hidden in the ground?

I also have some doubts about the flame fuelled by wood. How do they want to manage that? They would have to constantly put wood in the cauldron's bowl. Highly improbable. Gas has the advantage that you can stream it automatically into the bowl and that it has a constant flow, therefore creating a constantly big flame.

1) So did they talk about a cauldron tower outside the stadium on that bus tour or about a cauldron sitting on the stadium's roof? If the latter is the case, the position you describe probably is the one near the bridge in the northeast of the stadium, between that row of four catering pods in the north east and the block eight catering pods in the north.

Here's the picture I actually wanted to post with that:

JasonHawkes-3244_xlarge.jpg

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