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No coastline? No problem with the eco-friendly floating Unit Surf Pool

UNIT Surf Pool: The world's first floating surf pool at Surf Langenfeld
We spent the summers of our youth in above-ground pools, and now, the next generation can spend their vacation season in the 21st-century equivalent. Meet the Unit Surf Pool, a new wave pool in Lagenfeld, Germany that claims to be the world’s first floating wave pool, and more importantly, features the “most efficient artificial stationary wave in the world.”

While the pools that we are used to sit atop the solid earth, today’s floating wave pool … floats. Which is to say, it lives on top of a body of water. Rather than installing a surf park in concrete, this creative solution instead pumps water from the underwater environment of a body of standing water, Unit Parktech explains of its invention on its website. “Once above water level, the force of gravity creates a powerful stream accelerating down a ramp into the wave generating section of … the surf pool, where the stream meets the body of standing water,” the team continued. This ultimately creates a “stationary deepwater wave,” so you can surf on even the calmest of water surfaces.

Part of the beauty of the Unit Surf Pool concept is that it’s a more natural and environmentally friendly wave pool than other existing options. Seeing as it depends upon the body of water in which it’s situated, the pool consumes absolutely no additional water, and is entirely self-sustaining. Moreover, it purports to use less energy than other wave pools, as it doesn’t need large pumps to bring in external sources of water. And because it doesn’t treat the water in any way (for the most natural experience possible), there’s no concern about chemicals or other environmentally damaging solvents.

While the Unit Surf Pool may not make sense for a city with a coastline, where the surfing is already plentiful, the idea could be hugely helpful for areas that are landlocked with nothing but calm lakes and other wave-less water sources. Plus, given the relatively small carbon footprint such a wave pool would leave, it certainly sets a new standard for how surf parks in the future might structure themselves.

The first Unit Surf Pool is slated to open on March 11, so if you’re in the Langenfeld region, don’t forget to bring your board.

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Lulu Chang
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