2015 New York Design Awards

spaces, objects, visual, graphic, digital & experience design
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Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe [DRAFT]



Project Overview

The Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe was created from a simple idea to recreate the beauty and calm nature of the Earth. When exposed to ambient light and the Earth's magnetic field, the revolutionary globe seems to defy the laws of physics, rotating silently on its own without any batteries, electricity or visible forces. With its organic movement and soft earthy colors, it is intended as a striking conversation piece for home decor enthusiasts, early technology adopters, alternative energy seekers as well as those who simply want something they've never seen before.


MOVA International

Project Brief

The Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe is the first MOVA Globe to feature an authentic historical map. The old world map was produced by Giovanni Maria Cassini in 1790 and chronicles the three voyages of Captain James Cook, along with his observations, routes and theories. With a lovely palette of forest colors, precise cartographic elements, and a captivating rotation powered by ambient light, the Cassini Terrestrial is the perfect balance of antique grandeur, environmental consciousness and contemporary style.

Project Innovation/Need

By making ambient light and the Earth's magnetic field the crux of a minimal design, it gave us the opportunity to make advances in solar power and alternative energy that were previously unheard of in the consumer industry. We produced ultra-low-light solar cells and small magnetic components that functioned even inside the globe itself, allowing us to keep the technology completely internal while still drawing power from sustainable sources. The end result is not only the world's first and only product to have the solar panels hidden from view, but also a solar product that is as beautiful and magical in its design as it is functional.
The Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe truly represents the Future of Motion — where power cords and batteries are not allowed nor needed. A future where power mechanisms are hidden from view and add magic and inspiration to experiencing the object. Once one is introduced to this type of simulated perpetual motion, any other motion through a power cord and/or batteries is simply no longer acceptable. The Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe is more than just a product, it represents a major breakthrough in motion technology.

Design Challenge

Finding a way to create our simulated perpetual motion while also creating a high-end aesthetic was a challenge. In order to create the mystery of our globes movement, we had to ensure the product would continuously turn without the user seeing the inner workings. Our patented printing technique allows the graphics to be transparent enough to let light permeate the globe but also opaque enough to conceal the hidden technology. The basic building block for our MOVA Globes are the self-rotating inner spherical globe. Once the self-rotating inner spherical globe is done, it is then integrated with the precision molded outer shell. The self-rotating inner globe is placed and levitated inside the outer shell with fluid in order for it to start up and turn with the lowest possible friction in such a small volume.Finally, the outer shell has to be polished to perfection, in order to preserve the best possible visual quality which creates the optical illusion of the MOVA Globe floating on its stand.


In the process of designing the Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe, we were eco-conscious. We selected off shelf parts to use in our design and added value to them by the know-hows of our production processes. We tried not to add to the burden of our environment by using new parts that require additional processes and equipment. We also select parts and developed the production processes so our Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe is strictly ROHS compliant.
Most importantly, each Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe is designed and made to last. The longevity of each Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe means less is being put into the waste and recycling bin and more is kept and treasured. The Cassini Terrestrial MOVA Globe does not use batteries or power cords. It turns peacefully as long as there is sufficient artificial light (such as fluorescent, incandescent and LED) or sun light from windows. Today's electronic products tend to have a short life span, thus contributing to an excessive burden of recycling and waste management but we are trying to change that. It is our belief that a product that lasts is the product that succeeds in the long term.

This award celebrates creative and innovative design for either a component or overall product. Consideration given to aspects that relate to human usage, aesthetics, selection of components and materials, and the resolution of assembly, manufacturing and the overall function.
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