New York-based industrial designer and artist Kebei Li has designed a unique glass bench that is held together by vacuum suction. Three glass planes, one acting as a bench top and the other two as legs, are connected by vacuum-powered pneumatic fixtures. There are totally four sets of vacuum fixtures, (eight suction cups) each powered through a separate hose connected to a mechanical pump and vacuum reservoir. A microprocessor-controlled system monitors the pressure and turns on and off the pump when required.
From the designer, “The technology used for the bench is based on vacuum lifting systems designed for moving and installing oversized sheet stock materials such as glass, granite, sheet metal, and plywood that will be otherwise too heavy or lack of the proper structure for direct handling by human operators.
The vacuum lifter is able to create a hyper-secure structural bond with the sheet material it is designed to move, yet such a bond can be ended at any second. The system agilely oscillates between the extremes of super-structure and no structure.
The design of this bench explores the implication of harnessing the vacuum lifting system’s rare quality of reversibility and its unique aesthetic qualities for a functional scenario. Special vacuum fixtures are designed to assemble panels of tempered glass into a bench, and the whole setup can be disassembled and reverse to the state of tools plus raw materials.”