Extreme Engineering – Technology Friday

July 24, 2008 at 8:48 pm Leave a comment

Today I am going to share a few of the really large feats of engineering that astound me!

For me the most amazing has to be the Millau Viaduct France.

Form the Civil Engineering Portal (http://www.engineeringcivil.com/millau-viaduct-france-extreme-engineering.html):

Millau Viaduct France (In French le Viaduc de Millau) is one of the most awesome civil engineering project. It is a large cable-stayed road-bridge that spans the valley of the River Tarn near Millau in France. It was designed by structural engineer Michel Virlogeux and architect Norman Foster.One of the summit of this bridge is at a height of 343 meters)1125 ft) which makes it is the tallest vehicular bridge in the world.
The Millau Viaduct consists of an eight-span steel roadway supported by seven concrete pylons. The roadway weighs 36,000 tons and is 2,460 m (8,100 ft) long, measuring 32 m (100 ft) wide by 4.2 m (14 ft) deep, making it the world’s longest cable-stayed deck. The six central spans each measure 342 m (1,120 ft) with the two outer spans measuring 204 m (670 ft). The roadway has a slope of 3% descending from south to north, and curves in a plane section with a 20 km (12 mi) radius to give drivers better visibility. It carries two lanes of traffic and one safety lane in each direction.

This truly an awesome bridge!

The next feat of amazing and extravagant engineering comes to us from Chile. From the Add More Photos website:(http://www.addmorephotos.com/-2/posts/3_Galleries/6_Travel70_World_s_Largest_Swimming_Pool.html)

If you like doing laps in the swimming pool, you might want to stock up on the energy drinks before diving in to this one. It is more than 1,000 yards long, covers 20 acres, had a 115ft deep end and holds 66 million gallons of water. Yesterday the Guinness Book of Records named the vast pool beside the sea in Chile as the biggest in the world. But if you fancy splashing out on one of your own – and you have the space to accommodate it – then beware: This one took five years to build, cost nearly £1billion and the annual maintenance bill will be £2million. The man-made saltwater lagoon has been attracting huge crowds to the San Alfonso del Mar resort at Algarrobo, on Chile ‘s southern coast, since it opened last month.

(Lots more picture of it at the listed site)

Now we move on to some very practical engineering, a trash fed generator!  From the Ecogeek.org Website:

(http://www.ecogeek.org/content/view/1778/70/)

The US military is looking to cut back on two things in Iraq: fuel consumption and trash. So they’re finally getting on board with alternative fuel sources, using the trash they don’t want to get the fuel for electricity they need.

Lastly I bring to you the world’s largest digging machine, very handy if you need to dig you own river or lake! From the site of swapmeetdave.com: (http://www.swapmeetdave.com/Humor/Workshop/Trencher.htm)

This is the largest digging machine (or trencher or rotating shovel) in the world. It was built by Krupp and is shown here crossing a road in Germany on the way to its destination, an open air coal mine. Although at the mine the treads are unnecessary, it was cheaper to make the machine self-propelled than to try and move it with conventional hauling equipment. Some factoids:

  • The machine is 95 meters high and 215 meters long (almost 2.5 football fields in length)
  • Weight is 45,500 tons (that’s equivalent to a bumper to bumper line of jeeps 80 miles long)
  • It took 5 years to design and manufacture at a cost of $100 million
  • Maximum digging speed is 10 meters per minute
  • Can move more than 76,000 cubic meters of coal, rock, and earth per day

As always I thank you for your time and interest. Please take the time to Digg, Stumble Upon or add to the other social network of your choice to help me spread the word about these issues. Please forward any questions or suggestions to: askthefm@gmail.com

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