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A Czech architecture firm has created a series of tiny ice pods, based on the Warming Hut competition set five years ago. In their home town of Liberec Mjölk Architekti have built what they call ‘Polar Hens’. These ice pods are in close proximity to the Liberec dam inviting local hikers, ice skaters and workers to a well-earned break from icy temperatures.

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The ‘Polar Hens’ construction process involves inflating a silicon balloon with an external sprinkler that itself is connected to a compressor and generator. Water is then slowly pumped over the air-filled balloon, allowing the creation of a thick wall of ice. As walls thicken and become self-sustaining, the balloon base is removed, and a beautifully shaped igloo remains. The interiors then offer a safe haven from the bitter cold.

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For anyone attempting to create architecture in a sustainable way, the efficiency of this system is truly inspiring!