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Maths will build a bridge, hopefully!!!!!

February 1, 2012

Engineers need maths.

They (hopefully) calculate stresses and loads on structures BEFORE the building, bridge, airport is built.

Not only do you need maths, mathspigs, to ‘virtually’ destroy the Millenium Bridge in a Harry Potter film, you need maths, obviously, to build the real bridge. Unfortunately, the engineers made a big Boo Boo! They didn’t allow for pedestrian feedback causing sway or wobble. See 10 Biggest Maths Disasters in the World

Here is what happened to the Millennium Bridge

Vibration of the London Millenium Footbridge Maths

Here’s a little grab of the maths showing the pedestrian feedback loop causes wobble.

‘ we see that phase of the pedestrians’ feedback force is leading the output displacement of the bridge deck by an angle which becomes exactly  at the resonant frequency . This of course is what we expect for a negative damping force.’


Lego engineers need maths. 

Lego bridges can be VERY strong.

This is a LEGO MILLENIUM BRIDGE.

But this is NOT a suspension bridge. It is just a model. Here is a FANTASTIC site @ EXPLAIN THAT STUFF showing how bridges work.

A REAL Lego suspension bridge can hold a very heavy load.  Here is a Lego suspension bridge built at LegoWorld 2005. The break load for this Lego bridge was 40kg  (88 lb). This bridge could support a kid.

Here are two other Lego Bridges. The break load for the next bridge was 76 kg (167 lb). The break load for the third bridge was > 100 kg  (220 lb). These bridges could support an average sized adult.

A Neat Lego (Suspension) Bridge on You Tube. *


* Observe neat bridge Vs Unmade bed!

But here is Mathspigs FAV Lego bridge.

Not exactly a suspension bridge but very strong. And this was a kid experiment!!!!!!

Break load = 30.3 kg ( 66.8 lb)

See the next post for some fabulous Lego Maths. In the meantime, if you are going to build a bridge, perhaps, you should do it with maths not love. This is a truly spooky video from Cher and co. Wait for the chorus.


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