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Pole Screen in Vizag

Vizag, or Visakhapatnam, is a bustling city located in the southeastern state of Andhra Pradesh in India. Known for its stunning beaches, historic landmarks, and cultural heritage, Vizag is also home to an impressive engineering marvel - the Pole Screen.

The Pole Screen, also known as the Sundial or Gnomon, is a unique structure located in the heart of the city at the Andhra University College of Engineering. This engineering marvel is a tall tower that stands at a height of 28 meters and has a sundial on top, which is used to tell the time using the position of the sun.

The Pole Screen was designed and constructed by the famous British architect and town planner, Leonard K. Elmhirst, in 1933. Elmhirst was known for his expertise in town planning, and he was invited to India by the Maharaja of Mysore to plan the city of Bangalore. He later moved to Vizag and was commissioned by Andhra University to design a structure that would serve as a landmark for the university.

The design of the Pole Screen is unique and reflects Elmhirst's love for Indian architecture. The structure has a hexagonal base, and each face is adorned with intricate carvings and inscriptions. The tower tapers towards the top, and on the topmost face, there is a sundial that is accurate to within two seconds.

The sundial on top of the Pole Screen is not just a decorative element but also serves a practical purpose. The sundial is aligned with the true north and south poles, and the position of the sun casts a shadow on the dial, which indicates the time. The sundial is calibrated to Indian Standard Time and is accurate to within two seconds.

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