Saying goodbye to a true architecture, engineering & construction forensics legend

Debra Rubin, of ENR, shares the sad news of the passing of an AEC forensics grandmaster: John M. Hanson, who, as president, helped guide the growth of Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates Inc. into an industry-leading forensics and failures engineer and who led probes into high-profile collapses of the Kansas City Hyatt hotel walkway in 1981 … Continue reading Saying goodbye to a true architecture, engineering & construction forensics legend

Reexamining one of the most infamous bridge collapses in history

Astrophysicist and author Ethan Siegel, writing for Forbes, just helped to expose a longtime myth about good ole' Galloping Gertie, a bridge that (in)famously collapsed just a few short months after opening to public traffic. To help jog your memory, here is footage uploaded to YouTube of the bridge twisting and bouncing around: The story … Continue reading Reexamining one of the most infamous bridge collapses in history

Tracing the history of air conditioning’s impact on occupant health and comfort

Patrick Sisson, writing for Curbed, wrote a wonderful article: How air conditioning shaped modern architecture — and changed our climate. He states: Air conditioning enabled our great modernist buildings to rise, but it’s also fueled today’s energy and environmental crisis. AC helped create a new building typology, one that environmentally conscious architects and designers are … Continue reading Tracing the history of air conditioning’s impact on occupant health and comfort

What happens when actual performance varies greatly from the energy model’s predictions?

Britain has a problem. Chances are, the problem that Britain is facing also affects many jurisdictions in the US. What is this problem? Energy modeling — the process of using sophisticated software to predict future building performance — isn't as accurate as some industry professionals would like to believe. In other words, the supposed energy … Continue reading What happens when actual performance varies greatly from the energy model’s predictions?

Researchers demonstrate high-performance concrete that resists water and minimizes cracking

There are some in the building industry — perhaps even a majority of people — that believe concrete is either waterproof, or that it is somehow immune to any negative effects from exposure to moisture. However, typical concrete is porous, with many tiny cracks, allowing water to penetrate. Exposed to freeze-thaw weather cycles, that water … Continue reading Researchers demonstrate high-performance concrete that resists water and minimizes cracking