Could Volcanic Rock Be the Latest Material to Help Us Combat Climate Change?

Could Volcanic Rock Be the Latest Material to Help Us Combat Climate Change?

Climatic conditions throughout the world are changing and with extreme temperatures and scarce resources becoming the norm, architectural materials and techniques are having to innovate to prepare for the future.

'Carbon to Rock' is an installation by IGNEOUS TECTONICS (Cristina Parreño and Sergio Araya) being presented in the 2021 Venice Biennale that highlights volcanic rock as a promising material in the global push to mitigate climate change. 

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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics
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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics

The team behind the project explains:

CarbonToRock starts with the premise that all of the Earth's carbon originates from and ends up in rock. This principle has become the cornerstone of new technologies that aim to shorten the process of converting COto basalt. 

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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics
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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics

When Nobel Prize winner Paul Crutzen claimed that humankind had transformed into a geological force, he was referring to the collapse of the barrier between humans and the natural world; however, perhaps the most important point that he made was humanity’s role in this new configuration between natural systems.- Descripción del proyecto en La Bienal de Venecia 2021.

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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics
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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics
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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics

In this sense, the project explores new artificial methods shaping geological carbon processes, reimagining igneous rock as a resilient new architectural resource able to trap CO2.

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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics

In keeping with the theme of this year's biennale, "How Will We Live Together," the project is just one of many ways to evaluate our place among other living things and our impact on our planet's carbon cycle.

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‘Carbon to Rock’ en la Biennale Architettura 2021. Fotografías: Raul Betti y Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín. Image Cortesía de Igneous Tectonics

The project proposes that CO2 trapped in rocks is capable of creating sustainable building systems, combining traditional knowledge of stone materials with new manufacturing technology and CO2 absorption. 

Authors:

IGNEOUS TECTONICS, is a research platform established in 2017 by Cristina Parreño and Sergio Araya. It seeks to address modern environmental, social, and cultural issues facing the globe through the use of local materials harvested from volcanic landscapes.  Using igneous rock as a resource would not only prove beneficial to the environment, it would be an opportunity to combine history, geology, and advanced technology, and combine the knowledge of indigenous societies with that of modern science.  

With additional support from:

MIT International Science and Technology Initiative _MISTI.
Center for the Arts Science and Technology at MIT_CAST
Council for the Arts at MIT_CAMIT
Cuellar Stone Company.
Ministry of Culture, Arts, and Heritage_ Government of Chile.
Filantropía Cortés Solari.
Meri Foundation
AC/E Spanish Cultural Action

Complete Production Credits:

Location: Architecture Installation in Giardino delle Vergini.
Design: Cristina Parreño Alonso & Sergio Araya Goldberg.
Manufacturing: Cristina Parreño Alonso & Sergio Araya Goldberg with Cuellar Stone Company. Research contributions made by Pěc Lab and Carb Fix.

Video CarbonToRock sneak peek

Design: Cristina Parreño Alonso and Sergio Araya Goldberg
Assistant Editor: Ruth Blair Moyers
Models and Illustrations of the Basalt and Carbon Cycles: Cristina Parreño Alonso and Sergio Araya Goldberg.

Collaborators from Sergio and Cristina's Studio's “Igneous Tectonics:
CarbonToRock” Class (Spring 2020)
: Tayloe Boes, Daniel Griffin, Melika Konjicanin, Florence Ma, Ana McIntosh, Jitske Swagemakers, Carolyn Tam, and Lynced Torres.

Photography: Raul Betti and Adolfo Guiard Torre-Marín

Check out more of Archdaily's coverage of the 2021 Venice Architecture Biennale as well as our official YouTube playlist, featuring exclusive interviews with the architects and curators of the exhibition.

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About this author
Cite: Dejtiar, Fabian. "Could Volcanic Rock Be the Latest Material to Help Us Combat Climate Change?" [Roca volcánica, ¿el nuevo material para mitigar el calentamiento global?] 11 Aug 2021. ArchDaily. (Trans. Johnson, Maggie) Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/965734/could-volcanic-rock-be-the-latest-material-to-help-us-combat-climate-change> ISSN 0719-8884

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