Thursday, December 22, 2011

UKRAINE

Vladimir Grigoryevich Shukhov was a Russian engineer and architect renowned for his pioneering works on hyperboloid towers. The Adziogol Lighthouse is one of his remarkable structures designed on 1910 and first lit on June 14th, 1911. Also known as Stanislav Range Rear Light, the 64 m (210 ft) round skeletal steel tower is the tallest lighthouse in Ukraine. Its light can be seen for up to 17 nautical miles (31 km). It is located on a concrete pier on an islet off the mouth of the Dnepr River delta, about 30 kilometers (19 mi) from Kherson (46°29′32″N 32°13′57″E).
The main structure is a light circular steel web, tapering through a curve to the small beacon housing. Slender vertical members wrap around the column in a hyperbolic paraboloid, forming an open helical mesh. At the center of the web is a steel stair tower, giving a sense of solidity to the otherwise delicate structure.

RUSSIA

The Tokarevsky Lighthouse was built in 1910 to guide ships safely to the main Vladivostok harbor, in Russian Far East. The 12 m (39 ft.) white stone tower is located at the end of the mole at the southwestern tip of the Egersheld Peninsula.

NETHERLANDS

The Eierland Lighthouse is located on the northernmost tip of the Dutch island of Texel, near the village De Cocksdorp (53°10′55″N 4°51′19″E). Eierland was formerly a separate island, but it has been joined to Texel since 1630 by construction of sea dikes. The lighthouse construction began in July 1863 on a sand dune and it was first lit on November 1, 1864. The 35m (114 ft) round brick tower is painted red with the lantern and the watch room painted white. In the course of time the red color faded to pink, but in 2004 it was repainted in the original bright red. 
Electrified in 1927, the tower suffered heavy damages in April 1945, after one of the last WW II battles in Europe. The event known as the Georgian Uprising of Texel occurred when Georgian prisoners of war rebelled against their German captors and a bloodshed and destruction spread throughout the island. The tower was extensively repaired in 1948-49 and a new brick wall surrounded the damaged original. In this process the lighthouse lost two of its original nine floors and was reopened on March 24, 1950. The Eierland Light is almost year-round daily open to visitors and after climbing the 153-steps staircase (seven floors), one has a magnificent view over the Wadden and North Sea, the nearby island of Vlieland and Texel.

Friday, December 2, 2011

USA

On September 1, 1858 a 32 ft (10 m) round brick lighthouse was built on Mount Desert Island, Maine to mark the entrance to Bass Harbor and Blue Hill Harbor (44° 13’ 19”N  68° 20’ 14”W).  The cliffside Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse stands 56 ft (17 m) above sea level and its red light is visible for thirteen nautical miles. The 1-1/2 story wood keeper's house is used as a residence for Coast Guard personnel. Making part of the light station there are a boathouse, a pyramidal bell tower, a brick fog signal building, an oil house and a barn.  Electrified in 1949 and automated in 1974, the lighthouse is not open to the public.

FRANCE

For lighthouse enthusiasts like me, Brittany (Bretagne) is the paradise! The peninsula situated in the northwest of France, alongside the Atlantic Ocean has a rugged coastline, granite cliffs, dunes, white sandy beaches and numerous islands. All these natural landscapes are home of historic and wonderful lighthouses.
On the postcard four beautiful lighthouses of the Finistère Department: the black and white Phare du Créac'h at the northwestern tip of the Île d'Ouessant; the round stone Phare du Four located on a rock near Argenton; the red and white Phare des Pierres-Noires on an islet southeast of Île Molène; the square granite Phare de la Vieille on the rock of Gorlebella, in the strait Raz de Sein.

CROATIA

By the 19th century the Austro-Hungarian Empire had erected 48 lighthouses in the islands of the Adriatic Sea, locating them near strategic shipping lanes. Sveti Ivan na pučini (St. John out in the sea) Lighthouse is located on a rocky islet about 4 km (2.5 mi) southwest of Rovinj, on the western coast of the Istrian peninsula 45° 02" 39' N   13° 36" 47'  E. Built in 1853, the 15 m (49 ft) octagonal cylindrical stone tower is attached to a 2-story stone keeper's house. Making part of the light station there are a depot, an engine room, a wharf, a boat hoist and a boat shelter. The cream-colored stone tower was automated in 1983 and is supplied by 24 V DC solar modules or electric generator. Its white flash light has a range of 24 nautical miles. After its independence in 1991, Croatia refurbished several of the lighthouses and assigned them double-duty as inns. Today, 11 Croatian lighthouses, including Sveti Ivan, are available for vacation rental.