Failure

Review Of Movie Engineering: Godzilla (2014)

This is not a review of the movie for what it is: a high-budget, low-concept monster flick. I like it, but that apparently puts me in a small minority. This is review of how it presents issues of structural engineering concern, and the answer is “badly.” I’m going to focus on two aspects: buildings damaged …

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Bowstring Trusses – The Bad

Yesterday I talked about why one might want to build a bowstring truss; today, the opposite. Per a few questions that came up, I’m going to address the questions of identity – are these “Belfast trusses”? are these “lattice trusses”? – in “the Weird” post, coming soon. Some of the problems with bowstring truss roofs …

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Fail Safe

I’ll be writing a few posts shortly on bowstring-truss roofs. A few years ago, we analyzed several of those structures and I happened to be walking by one during demolition recently and took a picture (which will be here real soon now). The somewhat impressionistic photo above shows a bowstring-truss roof that we investigated. But …

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Conference Reminders

The Structural Engineers Association of New York annual conference is being held virtually this Thursday and Friday: “Maintaining the Past: Modifications & Retrofits to Existing Buildings.” The Northeast Chapter of the Association for Preservation Technology annual symposium is being held virtually this Friday: “Disasters and How We Overcome Them.” Through a spectacular failure of planning …

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Not Enough

A surprisingly large number of early skyscrapers in the US were offices for insurance companies. Those companies needed armies of clerks to deal with the paperwork of their business, and room to hold all that paper. One of the earliest to build large was Equitable Life Assurance, which in 1870 had George Post design a …

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