Desert Observatory
Kalateh, Iran

The village of Esfakh was destroyed by earthquake in 1978; most of the villagers built new homes nearby using modern materials. To revive the local economy and to promote the use of vernacular materials, the local council and residents developed this eco-tourism project to promote astronomy featuring views of the spectacular night-time skies in this area of Khorasan. Built entirely of 20 x 20 cm handmade adobe- and fired-bricks laid on stone foundations, the project features three concentric circular walls that contain a one-metre tall viewing platform that accommodates twenty stargazers at the centre; the surrounding walls are 1.6, 1.8, and 2.2 metres in height, and each successive course of brick is rotated 45° from that beneath it.

Source: Aga Khan Trust for Culture

Kalateh, Iran
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Completed 2017
70 m²
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