Mesmerizing GIFs of a Mechanical Model of the Solar by Ken Condal
SystemDesigner Ken Condal built a mesmerizing orrery (mechanical model of the solar system) with multiple handcrafted gears, wooden and acrylic spheres, and the mechanical engineering help of David Clark. Like a tiny kinetic sculpture, the structure takes motion through a carefully constructed system of gears, which are activated through a winding lever at the bottom.
The multilayered orrery includes the four inner planets—Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars—as well as Jupiter and Saturn (masterfully equipped with its own rings) revolving around a clear, acrylic orb representing the sun. Condal, who was never accustomed to working with gears, let alone building them by hand, studied their design and assembly for three months. He then proceeded to work an additional seven months to finally create this sculptural orrery.