i heart learning

i heart learning

Sunday, March 13, 2011

gyroscopic technology

For the past couple of days it has been impossible not to be glued to the television to watch and sympathize with the devastation going on in Japan.The footage has incited incredible feelings of horror and awe in the power of mother nature.

This incredible piece of footage (along with the 20/20 friday special I pvr'd and just watched) have taught me something today I never knew before.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ArQoWXzwBCc

I learned that because earthquakes are so frequent in Japan, the Japanese now construct buildings with flexibility so that instead of falling in an earthquake, they sway back and forth.
This is called 'gyroscopic technology,' (not to be mistaken with gyros from boustans) and it works using balance. When a building sways in one direction, a weight on the top of the building leans in the opposite direction, and keeps the building in perfect balance. It works in any direction, and is an engineering standard for all Japanese skyscrapers.

Japanese are so smart.
They may get lost in translation - but certainly not lost in technology.
We Quebeccors still struggle with the art of building roads without potholes.

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