How do Buildings Handle Mother Nature at Her Most Extreme?

earthquake-resistant-buildingExtreme weather conditions and natural disasters cause hundreds of fatalities a year and cause billions of pounds worth of damage. Due to advances in design technology and materials, architects and construction genius´ are miraculously coming up with new design concepts to create structures that can withstand extreme conditions to protect their investments and save lives and cities. The marvel of engineering in today´s world is nothing short of mesmerizing so we have compiled a list of five modern designs that will blow your mind rather than the roof from the top of your garden shed.

Earthquake Proof Buildings

With 13 million people squeezed into 15.14 sq. m of Tokyo, the only way architects can build is upward. The problem the Japanese have however is they are subject to earthquakes and have suffered their fair share of tragic tremors. To protect huge skyscrapers from seismic damage clever Japanese builders have introduced earthquake resistance and seismic isolation technology that gives the foundations the flexibility to sway rather than collapse under severe pressure.

Seismic Resistance Rail Tracks

It is not just buildings that the Japanese have been able to make earthquake resistance, their train tracks are as well. In seismic disaster of 2009, the technology was called in assistance in Kukushima when five trains travelling at 270km/hour were automatically forced into an emergency stop when the seismic waves were detected. None of the trains derailed despite the shuddering force 9.0 quake.

Reinforced Steel in Skyscrapers

Modern day skyscrapers are built with reinforced steel frames and curtain walls to carry the weight of increasingly tall structures and to protect them from toppling in extremely weather conditions like tornados and twisters. The steel structures also prevent buildings collapsing under intense heat when they are on fire. The only buildings in history to ever collapse in a fire were the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York - which suspiciously collapsed into itself like a controlled demolition. The power coatings surrounding the skyscrapers (such as the Shard in London, painted by Interpon) add a water resistant coating to building, protecting the glass and structure behind it.

Weatherproof Bridges

The billion dollar Russky Island Bridge which opened in Russia in 2012 is the longest and tallest in the world and specifically designed to withstand extreme weather conditions. Spanning 3100 metres across the Eastern Bosphorus strait, it is constructed with carefully plotted pylons that are bored 77metres into the ground. The complicated geometry enables the 70m tall poles to be supported by 22 brackets and continuous tapering that the architects claim can withstand adverse weather. The power coating that is used is weather proof as well and allows the bridge to deal with a number of adverse weather conditions.

Flood-Proof Cities

Speaking of whether proofing, Russia is also responsible for one of the most advanced and effective flood barriers. St. Petersburg is prone to floods and has suffered at least one a year since records began in 1703. When the bloated River Neva over-spilled in 1999 and caused $14m worth of damage the city planners were called to action which resulted in the colossal St. Petersburg flood barrier. The beast is constructed of 11 rock and earth embankments dams and fitted with 64 steel radial gates that allow water to flow through in normal conditions, but will shut up shop in time of flood.

The bigger the building, the better the painting solution required to cover it.

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