Low water content radiator made of 100% recyclable aluminum
Playing with modularity, Alberto Meda’s design for radiator company Tubes features a surface made of pleated elliptical elements.
March 6, 2019
Photos from Tubes
The ‘Step-by-Step’ radiator, the recent product of Tubes radiatori in Milan, is a significant architectural presence which, depending on the circumstances, can either be discreet or become protagonist of the space, and it is equipped with state-of-the-art technology, with the aim of achieving utmost efficiency with minimal energy consumption levels. Depending on the layout and the observer’s perspective, the aluminum module plays with light and creates visual effects to evoke different emotions.
Alberto Meda, the man behind the design, is an engineer and designer who has applied his a background in mechanical engineering to create a broad range of products including chairs, lighting, and other furniture and accessories. After graduating with a degree in mechanical engineering from Milan Polytechnic in 1969, Meda began his career as the technical director for Kartell, responsible for the control of projects. Six years later, he realized that design was much more fun than production and began consulting work as a free-lance designer for companies such as Alias, Alfa Romeo, Gaggia, Kartell, Centrokappa, Fontana Arte, Luceplan, Mandarina Duck, Philips, and Vitra.
Depending on the layout and on the observer’s perspective, charming games of light can be created, as well as visual effects that cause completely different emotions: from a slight sense of motion to a monumental architectural feature. “I like essential objects with a hidden complexity. Step-by-Step looks like a single surface, but it actually consists of modules with elliptical ribs that guarantee energy efficiency with minimal overall dimensions,” says Meda.
Modularity makes ‘Step-by-Step’ suitable for the most diverse design requirements. The basic module can be installed individually or placed beside another module, thereby creating four configurations: one or two modules tilting towards the right, one or two modules tilting towards the left. ‘Step-by-Step’ is available in the hydraulic and electric versions. The radiator heats up in two different ways: via radiation, in other words by radiating heat directly through the large heat-exchange surface, and through natural convection, thanks to the hot air that goes from the bottom upwards. It can also be accessorized with towel rails, making it suitable as well for use in the bathroom.
The ‘Step-by-Step’ radiator is part of the company’s wider collection where radiators and heated towel rails are reinterpreted by internationally-renowned designers. Its form takes on this flexibility, where twenty different combinations are achieved if multiplied by the different heights available.