rxwine
rxwine
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October 18th, 2010 at 2:06:40 PM permalink
Above ground airplane hangers which have been made to withstand anything but direct hits from a military grade explosive (usually on the end of a large projectile) -

- well anyway, I'm been in them, and I've been in Hoover Dam, and I'd choose Hoover first if I had a choice.

I too, believe, maybe they're more worried about potentially enough damage to cause problems to power generation, or shut down operations from a bomb, than complete failure. But I don't know that much about the weakest points of the dam, though I imagine by any standard it's got to be pretty formidable
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PeteM
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October 18th, 2010 at 3:12:32 PM permalink
Fascinating stuff. Is that "Air bubble" effect the same as the "water hammer" effect that torpedo designers were trying for at the start of WWII? Doctrine back then was to try and explode the torp under the target in order to "break its back". Unfortunately the magnetic detonators in use were so unreliable that there were many more duds than hits. Probably not an issue today,yes?
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Ayecarumba
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October 18th, 2010 at 5:01:33 PM permalink
Quote: rxwine

Above ground airplane hangers which have been made to withstand anything but direct hits from a military grade explosive (usually on the end of a large projectile) -

- well anyway, I'm been in them, and I've been in Hoover Dam, and I'd choose Hoover first if I had a choice.



As we are all well aware, the dam is not solid, but permeated by elevator and ventilation shafts, utility conduits, walkways and service corridors. I suspect a device detonated inside the structure could do significant, perhaps catastrophic, damage. There is a reason the dam was put on the high profile list, perhaps vulnerability is one of the considerations, or the Las Vegas visit by members of the "Detroit Sleepercell". Although the charges were later discoverd to be trumped up, many of the details remain cloaked. See a 2005 Washington Post article about the Detroit procecutorial shenanigans here.
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rxwine
rxwine
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October 18th, 2010 at 5:40:48 PM permalink
It was overbuilt apparently

From fastfacts databank I found here

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/buildingbig/wonder/structure/hoover.html

Quote:

The Hoover Dam is so thick and heavy, it doesn't even need to be curved. It's heavy enough to resist the weight and thrust of the water pushing behind it, but designers thought people would feel safer with a curved design.

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rxwine
rxwine
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October 18th, 2010 at 5:49:46 PM permalink
I wonder if we've attracted the attention of Homeland security filters by now?

bomb, dam...

"I know nothing. I see nothing." as Schultz use to say.
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mkl654321
mkl654321
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October 18th, 2010 at 6:11:21 PM permalink
Quote: rxwine

It was overbuilt apparently

From fastfacts databank I found here

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/buildingbig/wonder/structure/hoover.html



That's untrue. The curvature of the dam is absolutely integral to its function, i.e., that of holding back the water. How heavy (massive) it is isn't the issue; after all, even a very massive object can be SLID by a relatively modest force, because all that that force has to overcome is the object's (coefficient of) static friction relative to the surface on which it rests. The dam is not even close to massive enough to hold back the water by its weight alone.

The curve functions much the same way an arch does; it distributes the force/weight of the water out toward the anchoring points in the walls of the canyon. That way, the static friction that must be overcome is that of the entire mass of the rock walls. That is why when a dam is breached (transferring the burden back to the dam itself), portions of it often dissolve completely, because the mass of the dam is so inadequate by itself to hold back the water.
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rxwine
rxwine
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October 19th, 2010 at 2:42:49 AM permalink
Quote: mkl654321

That's untrue. The curvature of the dam is absolutely integral to its function



The Bhakra-Nangal (gravity) Dam in India versus Hoover (arch/gravity) Dam

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hoover_Dam
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhakra_Dam

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JerryLogan
JerryLogan
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October 19th, 2010 at 6:22:36 AM permalink
Mr. know-it-all BUSTED again.
Wizard
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October 19th, 2010 at 7:39:29 AM permalink
How about the Three Gorges Dam as well, the largest dam in the world.

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Nareed
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October 19th, 2010 at 7:48:13 AM permalink
The arch is one of the strongest known structures. How strong? It was incorporated in the design of suspension bridges like the Golden Gate and the Brooklyn Bridge. Ancient Roman bridges built 2,000 years ago still stand in some places.

Plus the materials and methods available in the 30s were different from what's available today.
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