How Water Towers Work

From Practical Engineering. Purpose and function of elevated water storage tanks. The job of finding enough water, making it safe to use, and then reliably distributing it to the system customers with almost no downtime is a monumental task that requires a lot of infrastructure. And, probably the most visible component of a public water…

What is Prestressed Concrete?

From Practical Engineering. Sometimes conventional reinforcement isn’t enough. The basics of prestressed concrete. Prestressing reinforcement doesn’t necessarily make concrete stronger. But, it does increase the serviceability of concrete members by reducing the amount of deflection under load. This video explains the two most common types of prestressed concrete: pre-tensioned and post-tensioned. Prestressed concrete is used…

Was Roman Concrete Better?

From Practical Engineering. Comparing modern concrete to that of the western Roman empire. More Videos About Concrete: – What is Concrete? (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOHURuAf5iY) – Why Concrete Needs Reinforcement (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZINeaDjisY) -Does Rebar Rust? (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PLF18H9JGHs) In this video, I discuss a few modern techniques that help improve design life of concrete, including roller compacted concrete (RCC) and water…

Does Rebar Rust?

From Practical Engineering. Check out the first two videos on concrete if you haven’t seen them already: – What is Concrete? (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UOHURuAf5iY) – Why Concrete Needs Reinforcement (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZINeaDjisY) While steel reinforcement solves one of concrete’s greatest limitations, it creates an entirely new problem: Corrosion of embedded steel rebar is the most common form of concrete…

Why the Tacoma Narrows Bridge Collapsed

From Practical Engineering. Wind can be one of the most critical and complicated loads on civil structures. The case of the Tacoma Narrows bridge is a well-known cautionary tale that’s discussed in engineering and physics classrooms across the world. Both resonance from vortex shedding and aeroelastic flutter contributed to the failure. When you push the…

Why Tunnels Don’t Collapse

From Practical Engineering. How simple reinforcement is used to prevent collapse of rock tunnels. Tunnels play an important role in our constructed environment as passageways for mines, conveyance for utilities, and routes for transportation. Rock bolts are a type of reinforcement for stabilizing rock excavations, usually made from steel bars or bolts. This simple construction…

What is Cavitation? (with AvE)

From Practical Engineering. The basics of fluid cavitation, including demonstration from AvE. If you subject a fluid to a sudden change in pressure, some interesting things can happen. You can cause tremendous damage to moving parts, or you can harness this destructive power in many beneficial ways. Thanks to AvE for supplying the demonstration for…