Expo 2005 World Exposition - Aichi 2005

Wisdom and nature

March 25, 2005 - September 25, 2005

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Nagakute Japan Pavilion

The Government of Japan will have three pavilions at Expo 2005 Aichi, Japan: the Nagakute Japan Pavilion, the Seto Japan Pavilion and the Japan Web Pavilion (http://www.nippon-kan.jp/). The key message of the Japanese government's exhibition programme is "Reviving the relationship between human beings and nature". The Japan Pavilions at EXPO 2005 Aichi, Japan, will offer a new prosperity for people around the world to live in harmony with nature. In this issue, among the three Japanese government pavilions, we present the Nagakute Japan Pavilion.

A mysterious one-storey wooden building, covered with some 30,000 bamboo trees and resembling a cocoon, will appear in the Nagakute Area of EXPO 2005 Aichi, Japan. This is the Nagakutee Japan Pavilion presented by the Japanese government. The theme of the pavilion is: "Creating 21st Century Prosperity through Japan's Experience - Let's Get Back to Nature".

Visitors will be able to approach this theme through three zones in the pavilion. In Zone 1, people will be able to see beautiful images from various parts of the world and become aware of hidden critical situations - such as the greenhouse effect and desertification - that threaten humans. In Zone 2, visitors will move on a conveyor belt to see exhibits of Japan's experiences over the past 60 years showing how Japanese people's daily lives are linked to nature. In Zone 3, concrete proposals in three places are made through three types of relationships that will become important from now on: "nature and life", "people and technology" and "technology and nature". Visitors will find themselves in a forest space created by a display of light, sound, scents and images, allowing them to experience the spiritual happiness of being connected to nature.

The pavilion will also feature the world's first 360° projection system in the form of a 12.8 metre diameter globe (1:1,000,000 scale). This is the Earth Room, a visual expression of the vitality and beauty of our planet. Visitors will experience the feeling of being one with our planet by feeling the innate life forces of the Earth.

It is also worth noting that the design of the Nagakutee Japan Pavilion itself expresses its theme.

The concept of this building, entirely covered by a bamboo cage, emanates from the ancient Japanese wisdom of weaving bamboo into a shade-providing lattice. This bamboo canopy will prevent light from reaching the building directly, creating a forest-like environment with a gentle breeze. This structure will lower the temperature inside the building, thus saving electricity for air conditioning.

On the other hand, a water flow system on the photocatalytic steel plates that border the roof has been adopted. The latent evaporation heat from this system will also help to lower the indoor temperature. This system combines an ancient Japanese custom of seeking coolness by sprinkling water on the street and grounds surrounding the house with the Japanese discovery of super-hydrophilic phenomena caused by photocatalysts.

Photocatalytic technology uses the oxidation that occurs when light strikes titanium oxide to break down dirt or microbes. It has various applications such as air purification, water purification and bactericidal and anti-fouling measures. For example, when the titanium oxide-coated steel plates of the Nagakutee Japan Pavilion are hit by light, the surface tension of the water is reduced, which prevents the water from becoming spherical. This property of photocatalysis is used to form a thin layer of water on the roof. In other words, water evaporates faster on photocatalytic steel plates than on other elements when exposed to the sun, and the temperature inside the roof is lowered as the evaporating water absorbs heat from the surroundings.

A new system, using solar and biomass power generation, will provide all the electricity needed to run the pavilion, which is packed with other environmentally friendly features. Its structure is made of thinning wood, the roof of bamboo tiles and the wall surfaces of biodegradable plastic. The entire Nagakute Japan Pavilion is a testing ground for new technologies and materials, a very active experimental pavilion.

© Japan Association for the 2005 World Exposition