Hidden talents

The Australian PlantBank building includes two subterranean thermal labyrinths - one is behind this metal screen. Air is pulled very slowly through the screens into the labyrinths. On a summer’s day, the thermal mass of the ground and the concrete labyrinths can pre-cool the air by up to 7.5°C before it reaches the building’s air-conditioning system. In winter the labyrinth can be used to warm the air, making the building more energy-efficient, and comfortable for staff and visitors.