Norwegian Town Will See the Winter Sun Through the Giant Mirrors

Photo by Kristian Vinkenes

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Grim Norwegian town of Rjukan – the center of Tinn municipality in the county of Telemark – for the first time will see the sunlight during the polar winter. It will happen this year, believe the locals, who have created a giant mirror to reflect light from the mountains.

More than half of the city including city center lack sunlight from September to March due to the shadow caused by the mountain in which valley Rjukan is situated. But this year the situation has to change, and the city will be able to enjoy the sun, regardless of the season. Commissioned by the City Hall (City Council agreed to invest the necessary 5,000,000 NOK), the city has brought three huge mirrors that will be established at an altitude of 450 meters on the slopes of the looming mountains with the help of helicopters.

Mirrors will be mounted on heliostats (devices which rotate the mirror so as to hold the solar rays in one direction.) A similar method of how to cover the city came up from the local hydroelectric power plant employee 100 years ago, but implemented only now.

It is worth noting that in 2006, a similar project was implemented in the village of Viganella in northern Italy, where the people were also suffering from the lack of sun. The mirror was found at an altitude of about 870 meters above the village, with an area of 40 square meters. Mirror is controlled by computer which allows you to monitor the location of the sun and adjust the tilt panels.

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