Watch: Engineering Fails! Throwback to when a simple physics principle brought down the Tacoma Bridge in US
On November 7, 1940, the Tacoma Narrows Bridge collapsed. The shocking incident happened in the morning and became one of the biggest bridge failures. The bridge collapsed because of a major Engineering failure! Yes, a Physics theory is said to be the reason behind this epic failure.
The constriction of the Tacoma Bridge started in September 1938 based on the design of Leon Salomon Moisseiff who was said to be one of the leading suspension engineers in the United States at that time.
A three-member panel was constituted by the Federal Works Administration to investigate the Tacoma Bridge collapse. The panel did not blame any individual but the entire Physics behind the failure.
Physics theory behind Tacoma Bridge collapse
As per the experts, the major reason behind the Tacoma Bridge collapse was the phenomenon of Resonance.
Resonance is where a periodic force syncs up with the natural frequency of a system like a swing. Because of resonance, the small periodic driving forces can add up to large oscillations over time due to the stored energy.
The Tacoma Bridge experienced resonance from the vortex shedding.
However, a few experts also suggest that an aeroelastic phenomenon known as "flutter," is also one of the reasons behind the collapse of Bridge. Due to the flutter effect, one of the steel suspension cables snapped.
A Twitter user shared the Tacoma Bridge collapse video, watch the video below:
So, next time don't forget to ask about the physics behind the Tacoma Bridge collapse.
As per the reports, the bridge took 19 months to complete at the cost of $6.4 million, originally the proposed budget of the bridge was $11 million.