Project Details
Funding Scheme : General Research Fund
Project Number : 12608719
Project Title(English) : ‘Dropped: Visualising and Materialising Space Debris through Sculpture and Film: A Human Taxonomy of Space'  
Project Title(Chinese) : 「墮落」:太空垃圾的雕塑與影像呈現——一種人類對太空的分類法  
Principal Investigator(English) : Prof NIXON, Louis 
Principal Investigator(Chinese) :  
Department : Academy of Visual Arts
Institution : Hong Kong Baptist University
Co - Investigator(s) :
Panel : Humanities, Social Sciences
Subject Area : Humanities and Arts
Exercise Year : 2019 / 20
Fund Approved : 390,400
Project Status : On-going
Completion Date : 30-9-2021
Abstract as per original application
After sixty years of space flight, space debris is an increasing hazard to space travel and satellite systems. The Kessler Syndrome, a runaway chain reaction of collisions, could exponentially increase the amount of debris, affect polar-orbiting bands and destroy satellites, rendering earth orbit impassable. Space environmentalism is a growing movement and concerns are increasing over the future pollution of the moon and other celestial bodies. Existing taxonomies of space debris have focused on the sizes, shapes and orbits of these objects. More recently, researchers have focused on the measurement, mitigation and potential removal of space debris. The proposed project, entitled ‘Dropped’, will seek to apply visual and artistic research methods and outcomes (photography, sculpture and film) to open up the world of space debris for new audiences in meaningful ways. The project will explore the problem of space debris by focusing on the human dimension, and on the stories of objects that have been accidentally dropped or deliberately placed in space by the 533 individuals who have travelled there. This project explores and extends a unique archive I have created of objects that were accidentally dropped during space flight. Through 'Action Research' methods (allowing the research and practice to coexist and co-work simultaneously) and created outputs (in 2D, 3D and 4D) each dropped object will be recreated through photography, sculpture and film for further study or research, thereby enabling the growing problem of space debris to be brought to the public’s attention in new and engaging ways. Through analysis of initial research undertaken at Kingston University since May 2015, and by using historical records, first-person accounts, mission films and observations from earth telescopes, I have (to date) identified and collated a ‘pictorial’ archive of 49 dropped objects. These objects collectively tell a visual and cultural history of space flight and space debris through a human-centred taxonomy. This archive offers powerful, intriguing insights into the personal stories of the astronauts themselves and of the history of spaceflight. The archive provides a unique visualisation of the problem of space debris and the psychology of littering in space. This project will seek to further research and reconstruct these ‘dropped orbiting objects’ in 2D, 3D and 4D forms. It will construct a Web-based platform to make these objects widely accessible as photographs, films and sculptures for further research and study.
經過60年的航天探索,太空垃圾對太空旅行和人造衛星構成的風險越來越大。一個名為「凱斯勒現象」(Kessler Syndrome)的理論假設太空垃圾相撞後會引起無法控制的連鎖反應,導致軌道上的碎片大幅度增加,影響極地軌道、破壞人造衛星,甚至使地球軌道無法通行。隨着太空環境保護主義的重要性與日俱增,人們也日益關注月球及其他星體未來的污染問題。 現時的太空垃圾分類法只著眼於碎片的大小、形狀和運行軌跡。直至最近,研究人員開始集中測量太空垃圾,緩解它們可能構成的危險,甚至試圖清除太空垃圾。 以下擬議的項目名為「墮落」(Dropped),旨在應用視覺和藝術作為研究方法,以攝影、雕塑和電影等不同研究成果將太空垃圾問題呈現於新受眾面前,向他們傳達相關訊息。此項目將從人類的角度出發,透過描述歷史上的533名太空人在軌道上意外留下或刻意放置垃圾的故事,藉以探討太空垃圾問題。 此項目將探索並擴展一個由本人建立的獨特檔案庫,當中藏有各式在太空飛行期間意外掉落的物件。通過「行動研究」方式(意指研究和實踐同時共存和進行)和二維、三維或四維的創作,每件掉落物將通過攝影、雕塑和電影形式再現,以便作進一步分析和研究,並藉此將日趨嚴重的太空垃圾問題以嶄新且吸引的手法引起公眾的關注。 通過分析金斯頓大學(Kingston University)自2015年五月起進行的初步研究,以及利用歷史記錄、第一手資料、宣教電影和地球望遠鏡的觀察,我(迄今)已確認並核對了49件掉落物的「圖象」檔案。通過一種以人類為中心的分類法,這些掉落物共同闡明了太空飛行與太空垃圾的視覺及文化歷史。該檔案庫不但對大空人的個人故事和航天歷史提供引人入勝的有力見解,而且更具體地呈現太空垃圾問題和闡明在太空中亂拋垃圾的心理學。 該項目將尋求以二維、三維或四維方式,進一步研究並重塑這些「軌道墮落物件」,亦會建立網絡平台,讓大眾輕易地取得讓這些掉落物的相片、電影和雕塑,繼而進行進一步的調查和研究。
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