The National Aquatic Center will host the diving, swimming and synchronized swimming events at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games. Known as the Water Cube, this one of a kind aquatic center has a bubbled surface that absorbs solar radiation and reduces thermal loss. The sunlight allowed into the structure also acts as a heat source for the swimming pool water.
At a cost of 100 million U.S. dollars, the construction on the Water Cube began in 2003 and the venue hosted its first test event in February of 2008. The site has three pools and a seating capacity of 17,000. Following the conclusion of the games, 11,000 of these temporary seats will be removed and it will host aquatic sports, fitness, and recreation programs.
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