Structural Engineering

Buildings and structures take careful planning in order to ensure that they don't collapse or fail in any way. Structural engineers analyze and study the way in which buildings support loads.

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Abandoned mine shafts may look romantic with their clapboarded entrances and rusting pickaxes, but they can be deadly. So who ensures that these dangerous sites are properly closed up? You may find the answer a little unsettling.

By Josh Clark

Hefting a sofa up a flight of stairs can take a lot of logistics. So what does moving thousand-ton buildings across cities -- or even oceans -- entail?

By Molly Edmonds & Laurie L. Dove

Domed cities would provide the same temperature year-round, no rain or snow, and the ability to go outside without worrying about a sunburn. Have they been tried before, and what about the people who enjoy their seasons?

By Marshall Brain

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The Hoover Dam holds back 10 trillion gallons of water. That's enough to cover the state of Connecticut 10 feet deep. How much damage would be done if the dam broke?

By Patty Rasmussen

If you wanted to build a Great Pyramid in today's market, you would need to take into consideration a lot of factors. How much labor would you need? What about materials? And how much would it cost you?

By Marshall Brain

The Alaska Pipeline carries oil from wells in the far north of Alaska down to the the port in Valdez, Alaska. If that pipeline blew up, what would happen to all that oil, and how much damage would it do?

By Marshall Brain

When pyramids come to mind, most of us think of Egypt, but pyramids exist in many parts of the world. How were they constructed without earth-moving or heavy-lift machinery? And most of all, why were these amazing structures built?

By Craig Freudenrich, Ph.D.

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They don't have engines, brakes or accelerators. No, these amazing machines rely on physical, centripetal and gravitational forces to urge thrills, screams and that sinking stomach feeling we all love (and hate). Read more about the science of fun.

By Tom Harris & Cherise Threewitt

A tunnel can be simply defined as a tube hollowed through soil or stone, but actually constructing a tunnel is a challenge. Find out how tunnels are built.

By William Harris

Whether they make you think of Hurricane Katrina or Led Zeppelin, levees are a critical safety feature for low-lying areas located near water. Why do they break?

By Marshall Brain & Robert Lamb

The twin towers of the World Trade Center were true originals -- their history is one of innovation, persistence and grand ideas.

By Tom Harris

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It's a leap of faith onto a curvy steep wet chute... Discover how water slides work and what draws thrill-seekers to them.

By Tom Harris

When the heat sets in, there's nothing like a day at the water park to cool things down -- water parks and their massive wave pools are a huge weekend attraction. Ever wonder what kind of machinery it takes to produce a wave? Learn exactly how an oce

By Tom Harris

Please settle an argument I'm having with my dad. He says the tallest building in the world is the Sears Tower in Chicago, IL. I think there's one that's taller. Is there?

By HowStuffWorks.com Contributors

Safe, professional building implosions combine mathematics, intuition and sheer explosive power. Find out how the experts bring down huge structures without damaging the buildings nearby.

By Tom Harris

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People build skyscrapers primarily because they are convenient -- you can create a lot of real estate out of a relatively small ground area. They're also awe-inspiring. Skyscrapers capture our imagination -- how high can we build them? Learn about the architecture and design of these monumental buildings.

By Tom Harris

Smart Structures will completely change the way buildings react to earthquakes! See how they will work!

By Kevin Bonsor

The world's first floating city is absolutely gigantic, fully loaded with amenities and necessities and could set sail in about three years. Find out what the Freedom Ship has in store for its lucky residents.

By Kevin Bonsor

Is there an easy way to measure the height of a cell phone tower in my neighborhood?

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Rome is famous for having large public fountains that work without the use of any kind of mechanized pump. How were these fountains able to generate enough water pressure without a motor? Check out this article for the answer to this question.