Tacoma Narrows Bridge

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  • Topic: Tacoma Narrows Bridge, Suspension bridge, Fluid dynamics
  • Pages : 7 (2182 words )
  • Download(s) : 280
  • Published : March 19, 2013
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The University of Manchester
Omar Al-Mosa (ID:7650116)

Table of Contents
Title Page…………………………………………………………..…1 Table of Contents………………………………………………..……2 Abstract…………………………………………………..….........….3 Abstract…………………………………………………………..…...4 Introduction…………………………………………………………...4 Part 1: Background…………………………………………………...4-1 Attempt to control the vibration ……………………….......…...…....5 Failure…………………………………………………...................…5 Causes of failure……………………………………………….………6 Replacement bridge…………………………………….........……….10 Conclusions…………………………………………………………...10 References...........................................................................................11

Abstract (143 words)
The Tacoma Narrows bridge was a one of a kind bridge at its time. Starting from its size and ending with the structure of the bridge, It was considered to be an outstanding bridge at that time. It looked perfect and flawless as it started swaying in windy conditions and still manage to stay standing. The bridge’s failure was in 1940 when a strong wind storm caused the bridge to vibrate in an unbalanced manner and collapse. Who is to blame for this tragedy? The Engineers? The public Work’s Association? They both share the blame for it. The designing faults are from the Engineers and a part of the blame falls on the Public Work’s Association because of their poor financing. Nevertheless, the failure of this bridge served as a valuable lesson, one that will be considered every time a bridge is constructed.

Introduction (410 words) :
We live in a world which is advancing exponentially. The advances and discoveries that have been made in the past decade are more than the ones made in the 20th century. The advances in technology that have been made in the last century are something to be proud of of course. However, they definitely did not come without failure in the past. Bridges are an example of how far we’ve come along in the world. Modern bridges are built based on the successful and unsuccessful bridges that have been built before them. A well known unsuccessful bridge that caused a leap of progress in engineering was the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. Background

Figure [ 1 ] The old Tacoma narrows bridge moving back and forth (Galloping) during a windstorm. The urge to build a bridge came in the late 1800’s. And its purpose was to connect Tacoma to Gig Harbour, over the Puget Sound. At the beginning, money was an issue which made this quite a difficult task to accomplish. And it took 10 years, from 1928, to come up with a plan to build the bridge and also cover the financial problems. However, that caused even more problems because the construction plan kept on changing due to many debates from several sides managing the project. At first, 25ft. Girders were proposed. However, that was very costly and instead, 8ft. Girders were decided claiming it would give the bridge a slimmer, more elegant design and also reduce the cost of construction. Construction finally started in 1938. The original Tacoma Narrows Bridge was opened to traffic on July 1, 1940. It was located in the U.S. state of Washington, near Puget Sound. The bridge was one of a kind at its time. It was really lightweight and quite flexible. The bridge was the third longest suspension bridge in the United States at that time as well, with a length of 1810 meters. Its supporting towers were 130 meters high, and they were 853 meters apart. From the time the deck was built, it started to move vertically in windy conditions and become a bit unstable. However, it was still considered safe. The undulating behaviour of the Tacoma Narrows suspension bridge gave it a 'galloping' appearance and thus, it attained the nickname “Galloping Gertie.” This swaying manner went on for a few months and the bridge seemed perfectly fine. Many people Thought the bridge...
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