How a curved glass Las Vegas hotel can burn people at the pool

According to a story in the Daily Mail, the design of the Vdara hotel in Las Vegas is leading to burnt guests at the pool. Because of the concave design of the building plus its glass exterior, several guests have reported being burned by this “death ray”:

Due to the concave shape of the Vdara hotel, the strong Nevada sun reflects off its all-glass front and directly onto sections of the swimming pool area below.

The result has left some guests with burns from the powerful rays and even plastic bags have been recorded as melting in the heat…

The Las Vegas Review Journal quotes one hotel employee as saying the building’s design causes the sunshine to be diverted ‘like a magnifying glass that shines down’ over a space of about 10 by 15 feet as the poolside.

And as the Earth rotates, the spot moves across the pool area. The ‘death ray’ can increase temperatures by around 20 degrees.

The article also suggests the architects foresaw this problem but their initial solution didn’t solve the issue.

Interesting stuff – the unintended consequences of building a large, concave, glass building in desert conditions. This could lead to a cheesy movie or some pontificating about the folly of humankind trying to build in a climate like that of Las Vegas.

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