Home Household Liquid clock, Rhei, demonstrates how time flows

Liquid clock, Rhei, demonstrates how time flows

Time flows, continuously and fleetingly. This abstract concept is now put into reality by Rhei, the liquid clock. Rhei is a prototype of an electro-mechanical clock that displays time in digits with a special magnetic fluid. Rhei is a contemporary, animated sculpture demonstrating the rhythm and uniqueness of time flows.

Rhei, the liquid clock, is the result of a yearlong passion project created by Damjan Stanković, an interaction and interface designer based in California, USA. It is the winner of the 2015 Red Dot award, one of the most prestigious design awards worldwide. Rhei is a Greek word meaning “it flows”.

liquid clock


How does the liquid clock work?

Rhei pioneers the practice of manipulating liquid substance in its natural, unrefined form to display shapes. It stands between the analog and the digital arenas, utilizing the rules of mechanics and the laws of nature to create an elegant illusion of time.

Rhei uses ferrofluid as the display liquid and guides its movement with magnets on the back. Ferrofluid is like a liquid magnet. It is created by grounding magnetic material into extremely fine powders—10 nanometers for each particle—and suspending them in a carrier liquid. Ferrofluid was originally invented by NASA as a liquid rocket fuel.

liquid clock



What Rhei represents?

The artistic value of Rhei seems to surpass its primary function — it is a dynamic installation embodying the philosophy of time in a simple digital clock.

  • Time is transiency: each moment is different. Each digit Rhei creates is also different, never showing the same shape twice.
  • Time is continuous: it runs nonstop. The rhythmic liquid flow Rhei captures intimates it perfectly.
liquid clock



Rhei is still a prototype. The designer is working to make it into production. To learn more, check out www.hellorhei.com. Subscribe to Apollo Box Blog Newsletter below for product updates.

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