Ontario Science Centre Hydraulophone (a self-cleaning
highly expressive musical keyboard fountain)
The FUNtain (TM) is a self-cleaning acoustic keyboard instrument for use in
public spaces. The FUNtain is a fun-to-play fountain
keyboard made entirely out of
Type 316 Stainless Steel (the same material used to make surgical
instruments) and it has no moving parts to wear out or
harbour contamination. Each key is a water jet,
so the keyboard cleans itself, and also allows a much wider range of
musical expression than possible with hard plastic or wooden keys.
The FUNtain is the centerpiece of
Teluscape, an outdoor park/playground built on the site of
the original fountain out in front of the Ontario Science Centre.
The main focal point of Teluscape is a circular pipe organ
that consists of two organ consoles, each of which is a semi-circular
hydraulophone (water-pipe-organ-flute and fountain),
along with two visible ranks of organ pipes arranged in a larger
circle around the hydraulophones.
The hydraulophones produce sound of their own, as well as drive the
organ pipes through hydraulic action.
When you block one of the jets on the hydraulophone, it produces its
own sound (as hydraulophones normally do) while it also sends water
out through the mouth of the corresponding pipe in the North Pool.
Water that comes out of the mouths of the organ pipes, as they take turns
speaking, collects in the North Pool and cascades down the back side of the
Download avi (about 10meg)
resolution version in Quicktime MPEG 4 (about 40 meg)
Download a very
low-resolution Quicktime MPEG 4 version of the movie (poor image
quality but small file size)
Opening of Teluscape, Wednesday 2006 September 20th:
October 2006, a while after the opening:
Each pump is connected by way of a separate
3 inch diameter water supply pipe
Three air compressors supply wind to the pneumatophonic component of
the water pipe organ.
Each is a four cylinder Ingersoll Rand
compressor with a separate 25 horsepower motor for each compressor.