Thomas Heatherwick’s Rolling Bridge
A model of the pedestrian bridge that spans a part of the Grand Union Canal in Paddington, London.
It won the designer, Thomas Heatherwick, the British Designer of the Year Award in 2006.
The original is hydraulically powered and curls to form an octagon; the model is in six sections forming a hexagon when folded.
Each section is hinged at the walkway level, where an electric motor drives a screw jack on either side of the walkway via bevel gearing, which fold the handrails between each section.
The electrical circuit incorporates raise and lower microswitches at each section to automatically terminate the folding and unfolding actions, diodes are also built in to prevent current feedback across each section.
Read an in-depth article about this model.