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Crouching man

Standing 25.6m-high, Antony Gormley’s crouching man sculpture, known as Exposure, contains 500 steel nodes with connections requiring some 16,000 bolts.
A remarkable structural sculpture, say the judges and one which became a ‘labour of love’ for the whole project team.

The sculpture, based on Antony Gormley’s own body, was designed in collaboration with Cambridge University and Royal Haskoning in The Netherlands. This design was then transferred directly onto Had-Fab’s Tekla software package for detailing.

Had-Fab says it has many years experience of producing complete structures, fixtures, fittings and towers for power and telecommunications. However, with a project as complex as this one a web viewer tool was essential to provide the structural engineers with 3D details of the nodes, so they could confirm that the construction met their design requirements.

“We’d been in contact with Mr Gormley discussing this project for about five years,” says Had-Fab’s Managing Director Simon Harrison. “Numerous companies were initially contacted by him to produce the complex steelwork but most refused the job after completing feasibility studies.”


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1999 ENR 125th Anniversary – 125 top people

A great list of 125 engineers and construction people that we should know.


A harmonic convergence of the built and natural environments occurs where McCullough’s long, low spans seem to flow to the waterways they cross and echo the rolling low foothills of Oregon’s coastal mountains range. As an assistant state highway engineer and chief bridge engineer, he designed hundreds of spans including 10 major ones on Oregon’s coast highway. Perhaps the most innovative of McCullough’s contributions was his use of the reinforced concrete tied arch. With the deck hung by suspenders from overhead arches, and the deck acting as the tie, it proved an economical yet beautiful choice for steep places where it was nearly impossible to provide massive abutments for conventional arches.

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Do we need homework for students?

I give students homework in my class. I look at it as a way to a) get them to read the textbook and b) gauge how much they understand the material.

But is it needed?

Here is an article that lays out some questions…,

The country with the most successful educational system, according to the Economist study, is Finland. Students there are assigned virtually no homework; they don’t start school until age seven; and the school day is short. It is estimated that Italian children spend a total of three more years in school than Finns do (and Italy ranked twenty-fourth).

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Pro Bono Engineering

No this post has nothing to do with Sonny and Cher (how old am I) but with the issue of providing professional services for free.

My wife sent me a link to which is a website based on an encore working environment after your main career winds down. They had some stories of people doing good works for the public.

Wiki describes Pro Bono as,

Pro bono
Pro bono publico (English: for the public good; usually shortened to pro bono) is a Latin phrase for professional work undertaken voluntarily and without payment or at a reduced fee as a public service.

It is common in the legal profession and is increasingly seen in marketing, technology, and strategy consulting firms.

Pro bono service, unlike traditional volunteerism, uses the specific skills of professionals to provide services to those who are unable to afford them.

As I sit here I am hard pressed to think when I used my professional knowledge (however limited) to help someone for free. Lawyers can do it and limit their liability, we should be able to do it as well.

Anybody use their PE for good without asking for remuneration? Hmmm, I need to join the human race.


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Ever have that day?

Remember a year ago when you sat in a meeting and explained what the problem is with the project. Everybody thought you were nuts.

So they kicked it out for research. A year later the results come back and prove you were exactly right. The problem is no one remembers you were right.

Today that happened to me.

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Happy Birthday to me!

I started this blog four years ago this month. My biggest regret is that the Happy Pontist started his blog a few months ahead of me, so I have this older better looking sibling inferiority complex…..

So Happy Birthday to me!