Structural engineering is a time-honored profession that dates back as far as 2700 B.C.E. when construction on Egypt’s pyramids began. And while it’s true that many underlying principles in the industry have stayed steady over the years, it would be a mistake to dismiss new technological innovations and techniques. Today’s structural engineers have more tools at their disposal than ever before – here is a closer look at some of them.
This is a particularly interesting example that might not immediately seem like a new technology; however, it is often described as a “smart” concrete that is able to heal its own cracks and repair wear and tear. This is thanks to sodium silicate that is mixed in with the concrete itself. When cracks form, the sodium silicate within the mix crack open to fill the void with a gel-like agent. That translates to less money spent repairing foundation issues that arise with concrete and more time designing the safest space possible.
Along the lines of the first example, this new technology offers structural engineers the revolutionary ability to predict cracks and fractures in buildings before they occur by monitoring the stress within the building material itself. This is done via carbon nanotubes – incredibly small carbon tubes that can be embedded into things like metals, wood, glass, and concrete to add tensile strength and density as well as give engineers the chance to embed nanoscale sensors into the materials to monitor the “health” of a building.
Advanced Modeling and Analysis Software
Today’s modeling software is truly a modern marvel. Structural engineers have the ability to include all manner of programs in their planning process to help them determine everything from the best material type for a building’s size and intended use, the best placement of the building given it’s intended use and the properties of the area in which it is to be built, and even the ideal type of structural support to help create the safest, most resilient buildings to date. This allows engineers to accomplish in a short amount of time something that would otherwise take hours and hours of calculation. In turn, this frees them to spend more time creating innovative and functional structures that are energy efficient.
Modern structural engineers can create incredible structures that require less maintenance and offer more convenience and smart technology than ever before. Our team loves working with these new strategies – reach out to us today for more information!
If you have any comments or questions then please contact John M. Cruikshank, PE, President & CEO of OKAMOTO Structural Engineering at email@example.com, (714) 444-2422 x101, www.okamoto-se.com