Technology

Good News For Light Sleepers

Gravity-defying beds are no longer a figment of Stanley Kubrick's imagination.

By Eric JaffeDec 8, 2006 12:00 AM
Concept image courtesy of Universe Architecture

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Frustrated by how much gravity dictates design, Dutch architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars searched for a way to defy convention and came up with a bed that hovers through magnetic force. Based on the black monolith from Stanley Kubrick's 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey, the 10-by-4-foot slab harbors a magnet that is constantly repelled by another magnet embedded in the floor. Thin cables tether each floating corner to the ground "to keep the bed from falling upwards," Ruijssenaars says.

Ruijssenaars, whose own bed hails from Ikea, envisions designing an entire airborne ensemble of Japanese dining tables, chesterfield sofas—even outdoor pavilions. For now, those seeking an antigravity beauty rest must shell out $1.5 million. Another downside: Many metal objects, including cell phones, laptops, and guests with metal plates in their heads, cannot be stored in the intense magnetic field underneath the bed. This field should not disrupt a good night's rest, however, as layers of plastic and steel almost eliminate the magnetism on top of the bed. Altogether, the structure can support nearly 2,000 pounds, and any wobbling stabilizes in a split second. Does that include movement, say, with a partner? "Of course," Ruijssenaars says. "It's a bed."

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