This is an archived page from the Website Archive of British artist Ellie Harrison from Version 3.0 (active 2008 - 2015). New website:

last updated
15th July 2015

In this kinetic installation a carrot and a chocolate éclair of similar sizes race around two facing Hornby train tracks, at velocities proportional to their chemical energy contents.

A carrot of mass 0.2kg has a chemical energy content of 312,000 Joules and a chocolate éclair of mass 0.1kg has a chemical energy content of 1,778,000 Joules. By hypothetically equating these energy values to kinetic energy, it is possible to calculate the velocities at which an apple and a doughnut would be travelling if there could be a direct conversion between energy types.

By rearranging the equation for kinetic energy (kinetic energy = ½ mass × velocity²) you find that if a carrot’s chemical energy content was in fact kinetic energy, it would be travelling at a velocity of 1,766 metres / second, and a chocolate éclair would be travelling at a velocity of 5,963 metres / second.

For the installation, it is assumed that this energy will be converted at a constant rate over a period of 10,000 hours, resulting in the carrot and the éclair travelling at velocities of 0.29 metres / second and 0.99 metres / second respectively.