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Google Earth Plug-in: Sculpture Elia, a fomous piece of art in Denmark

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Sculpture Elia outside Herning was created by the swedish artist Ingvar Cronhammar in 2001.

The external curved surface is shaped as a spherical cap, where the diameter of the sphere is 88m. The diameter of the cap at ground level is 60m. Staircases 10m wide are built into the spherical cap facing each of the four corners of the globe. The staircases have very large steps (about twice the size of a normal staircase). The staircases end in a platform about 11m over ground level. The interior of the sculpture can be viewed through an opening in the spherical cap measuring 10m x 10m.

Four pillars are placed at the corners between the staircases. The pillars rise about 30 m above ground level and are topped with red domes, illuminated from below and equipped with spires to attract lightning.

The base of the sculpture is constructed as the spherical cap, where the sphere has a diameter of 220m. Consequently, the centre of the base is 4m below ground level.

The floor of the sculpture is finished with an asphalt coating.

The external spherical cap, the staircases and the four pillars are constructed of steel. All visible surfaces are finished with black paint. A fifth pillar is placed in the middle of the four pillars. A gas burner is located in the fifth pillar, about two meters under the viewing platform.

At random intervals, the gas burner shoots a pillar of flame about one meter wide and 8.4m high up between the pillars. The gas flame is ignited by a sensor-controlled computer - once within an 18-day period. Each time, the flame burns for about 25 seconds.

The pillars are earthed so that they can function as lightning attractors. In the event of a lightning strike, there will be a powerful resonant sound effect in the interior of the sculpture.

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