Acacia IoT Furniture

Furniture, Projects

Acacia IoT Furniture


Commissioned by Nanyang Technological University Museum, the Acacia Internet-of-Things(IoT) Furniture is located at NTU Alumni House, Singapore

As plans for a more urbanized university campus developed, the Acacia trees native to the NTU Yunnan Garden Campus had to be removed. Mr. Peter Arnoud Bensen, Artist and Designer of PABensen Pte. Ltd. proposed the idea of preserving these trees by turning them into products which can be integrated into the new buildings where they once were. Bensen designed an intricate furniture collection consisting of four chairs, a table, a lamp and a footrest. The furniture’s spherical and tree-like appearance is reminiscent of its origin. Bensen wanted to have as visible as much wood visible with a natural shape and design. The challenge was to keep the furniture as light as possible without making it too bulky. He came up with the spherical shape as it represents the planet earth where we all live.

With this, Prof. Pina Marziliano, School of EEE, NTU extends the idea to incorporate the Internet of Things (IoT) into the furniture to her final year project students. The concept driving the project was the idea to grant these trees a second life. From logs to furniture, the integrated IoT technology allows the trees to sense their surroundings once again. The sensor node in the chair provides a sense of touch and detects the furniture’s occupancy  but also provides the occupant a sense of being care of as the audio player lends the furniture a voice, allowing it to communicate with users through sound and music. With this, more IoT applications can be embedded into the furniture, ultimate bringing them back to life and increasing their worth. The possibilities are endless.