Designer talks about world's highest flag in Baku

Mon 06 September 2010 12:35 GMT | 17:35 Local Time

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David Chambers

AzerTaj interviews David Chambers, general director of Trident Support Corporation.

Mr Chambers, you are the head of the company that built the highest flagpole in the world - 162 metres - in Baku. What would you like to highlight about the project?

Our company worked on this project for two years. The flagpole erected in Baku is 162 metres high and 30 metres, or 22%, higher than the previous world record of 133 metres.

The world record has grown as follows: 123 metres in Abu Dhabi, 126 metres in Amman, 132 metres in Amman, 133 metres in Ashgabat. You can see that it's a gigantic jump to 162 metres.

We primarily took into account that Baku is a city of winds. The latest technology was applied in engineering calculations and flagpole design. This meant that the flag pole can withstand wind speeds of up to 209 km/h or 58 metres per second.

You were present at the ceremony of the opening of National Flag Square?

I would like to say first that the project to build the highest flagpole in the world in Baku was a far grander concept than all the previous projects.

The flagpole in Baku is the central element of an entire complex which has finally become National Flag Square. As well as the flag, the square has a giant emblem and a pedestal in the shape of an octagonal star which bears the words of the national anthem.

I think this is very symbolic and very patriotic. The concept was initially fixed by the head of state in the objectives set to everyone involved in the project. To be honest, I was impressed by the attention the head of state paid to this project. He visited the square at the construction stage six times and gave valuable advice. In other words, he kept his finger on the pulse of the project. And the logical end result of this was the grand opening of the square at the highest level.

Though I have attended many opening ceremonies for the highest flags, I haven't come across this attitude very often. This shows the importance attached by your president to state symbols.

It deserves respect.

How do you find modern Baku? Does the flag fit in with the city's architecture?

I have to admit that during my first visit I was amazed by Baku's location, especially Baku Bay. But when I was shown the planned location for the flagpole, I realized that it would be seen from all points in the city, which makes the project special and unique.

I can speak for hours about modern Baku, since there are very many new architectural buildings, which can compete with the most ambitious architectural projects in the world. However, the thrill of Baku is its seafront promenade which has a wonderful panorama of the biggest flag in the world

Are there any special requirements for large flags?

Certainly, there are. The flag flying on the flagpole in National Flag Square in Baku is itself a world record breaker. It is not merely big, it is super-gigantic.

As for requirements for the flags, there are two types of material for flags - a lighter, bright nylon and heavier, more durable polyester. The nylon flag cannot stand strong winds, while the polyester flag does not fly in a light breeze.

So, several sets of flags are needed, both nylon and polyester.

When commissioning the project in Baku, we said that the flag would have to be lowered in strong winds. The lower margin of wind speed which is considered stormy is 20 m/s. At the same time, I would like to stress that the wind speed at 162 metres is usually 6-8 m/s higher than at sea level.

So on days when the wind speed exceeds 20 m/s, the flag must be lowered. This is usual for flags throughout the world. It's the only way to ensure the durable life of every flag.  

In other words, the fact that Baku is a city of winds was taken into account not only in construction of the flagpole but also in the design of the flags.

Right you are. As I have already mentioned, we recommend using flags in conditions below the wind speed limit. When the speed is higher than recommended, the flag should be lowered a little. We calculate that there are no more than 40 to 50 such days in Baku. The rest of the time, the flag can be calmly flying over the city.

How do you feel after completing such a major project?

To be honest, I am proud of having built the highest flag in the world in Baku. In the two years that I have worked here, your city has become very close to me. I have made many good friends here and I am sure that I will be visiting the city very often.


See Also

Azerbaijani president's speech at National Flag Square

Azerbaijani flag lowered on world's tallest flagpole

Azerbaijani flag flies on world's tallest flagpole

Flag hoisted on world's highest pole in Baku - PHOTOS



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