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What is engineering??
Transcript of What is engineering??
What is Engineering?
Engineering combines the fields of science and math to solve real world problems that improve the world around us.
Watch these engineers in action!
The failure of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge abruptly ended an entire generation of bridge engineering theory and practice, and the trend in designing increasingly flexible, light, and slender suspension spans.
Othmar Amman said of the collapse of the 1940 Narrows Bridge, "Regrettable as the Tacoma Narrows Bridge failure and other recent experiences are, they have given us invaluable information and have brought us closer to the safe and economical design of suspension bridges against wind action."
Learning from failure: Tacoma Narrows Bridge Collapse
Sinking of the Titanic
Research has found it likely that the iceberg buckled the plates and popped out substandard rivets along a length of the hull, allowing water into at least five of the watertight compartments. As the boat went down by the head, water flowed over the transverse bulkheads, which were barely above the waterline, into other compartments. It has been said that the height of the bulkheads was reduced to avoid spoiling the first-class public rooms.
The Space Shuttle Challenger explosion
Just 73 seconds after its launch, on 28 January 1986, space shuttle Challenger broke apart, killing its seven crew members. The subsequent Rogers Commission found the cause of the accident was the failure of both primary and secondary O-rings on the right solid rocket booster, allowing hot gas and flame to escape, which then came into contact with the booster attachment and external tank, resulting in structural failure. The problems with the O-rings had been known about for nine years but had been ignored, partly because safety was deemed ensured with the presence of the second ring. However, as was later made clear, the second ring was there for unforeseen failure, not a failure that had been considered. Engineers' warnings that low temperatures would exacerbate the problem were also ignored by NASA managers because of pressure to keep to the launch timetable.
Now widely used as a case study for trainee engineers, this disaster has been used to teach many lessons: primarily that that the advice of engineers should be considered carefully by management; and that the ethics of whistle-blowing and group decision-making should be introduced. Afterwards, there was a total redesign of the solid rocket boosters, in which three O-rings were incorporated, watched over by an independent oversight group as stipulated by the commission.
In the aftermath of the disaster, the height of transverse bulkheads was increased and double hulls reaching further up the sides of ships became common. There were new regulations regarding safety, increasing the number of lifeboats and allowing easy access to them for all passengers. There were also changes regarding the use of radio at sea.
So with what do engineers need to start ?