ScienceDaily (Apr. 26, 2012) — ‘Self-healing’ concrete is being developed by researchers at Northumbria University which could see cracks in concrete buildings become a thing of the past.
— Motivated by the desire to determine the simplest 3-D structure that could take advantage of mechanical instability to collapse reversibly, a group of engineers at MIT and Harvard University were stymied — until one of them happened across a collapsible, spherical toy that resembled the structures they’d been exploring, but with a complex layout of 26 solid moving elements and 48 rotating hinges.
“The world’s longest suspension bridge. “
Location: Kobe and Awaji-shima, Japan
Completion Date: 1998
Cost: $4.3 billion
Length: 12,828 feet
Longest Single Span: 6,527 feet
Engineer(s): Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Authority
In 1998, Japanese engineers stretched the limits of bridge engineering with the completion of the Akashi Kaikyo Bridge. Currently the longest spanning suspension bridge in the world, the Akashi Kaiko Bridge stretches 12,828 feet across the Akashi Strait to link the city of Kobe with Awaji-shima Island. It would take four Brooklyn Bridges to span the same distance! The Akashi Kaikyo Bridge isn’t just long — it’s also extremely tall. Its two towers, at 928 feet, soar higher than any other bridge towers in the world.
SAN FRANCISCO — Venture deep inside the new skyway of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, and it becomes clear that the bridge’s engineers have planned for the long term.
At intervals inside the elevated roadway’s box girders — which have the closed-in feel of a submarine, if a submarine were made of concrete — are anchor blocks, called deadmen, cast into the structure. They are meant to be used decades from now, perhaps in the next century, when in their old age the concrete girders will start to sag. By running cables from deadman to deadman and tightening them, workers will be able to restore the girders to their original alignment.
The deadmen are one sign that the new eastern span of the Bay Bridge, which includes the skyway and a unique suspension bridge, is meant to last at least 150 years after its expected opening in 2013. (The existing eastern bridge, which is still in use, will then be torn down.)
The Falkirk Wheel was completed in 2002 as part of the Millennium Link project. The project cost £84.5 million and had the objective of restoring the ability to navigate across Scotland on the Forth & Clyde and the Union Canal. The Falkirk Wheel is the world’s first and only rotating boat lift. How it functions? … Read more
(From Technology Review, as published on January 11,2012 by Kevin Bullis)
The findings of the three-phase project was published in its capstone Innovation Impact Report. The study was launched in February 2010 when TMS convened an Energy Materials Blue Ribbon Panel, consisting of 21 thought leaders in materials science and engineering.
The silk that spiders use to build their webs, trap their prey and dangle from your ceiling is one of the strongest materials known. But it turns out it’s not simply the material’s exceptional strength that makes spider webs so resilient; it’s the material’s unusual combination of strength and stretchiness — silk’s characteristic way of first softening and then stiffening when pulled.
These properties, scientists have found, vary depending on the forces applied, as well as on the overall design of the web.
Markus Buehler, an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering (CEE) at MIT, has previously analyzed the complex, hierarchical structure of spider silk and its amazing strength — on a pound-for-pound basis, it’s stronger than steel. Now,
(Extract From Science Daily)
Armies of Robots are coming to crawl up the towers and skyscrapers to make repairs;In near future, human beings don’t have to, leading to less safety concerns, of course speed,economy results.
Hod Lipson, an associate professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, and of computing and information science at Cornell University,as his Creative Machines are going on with their latest