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Dreaming Of Torsional Building Oscillations During An Earthquake

Posted October 20, 2012 6:15 PM

From Science 2.0:

I had a dream. So what, we all do. Well, this was particular, because I remember all of it well, and because it involved a very interesting situation. I was at Fermilab, in an office on a top-level floor of a tall building, when a powerful earthquake hit.

This was supposedly the Fermilab Wilson Hall (aka Hirise), the landmark administrative building of the Illinois Laboratory (see picture below); however, as in most dreams, reality was slightly modified. The building was not shaped like a capital "A", although it shared some distinctive characteristics with it: like the Hirise it had an internal empty space, but this was with cylindrical symmetry: it was basycally a cylinder, sightly narrowing toward the top. Thinking about it, this was sort of the merging of the Hirise with Building 40 at CERN - which has a central core which is in fact exactly cylindrical, with an empty center. The building in the dream however was much taller than either of the two real-life examples.

As the earthquake struck the building started to oscillate. Being in a top floor, the oscillations were powerful and scary - it looked like the concrete of the pillars which lined up around the internal empty space would shatter. I realized there was no time to try and leave the building, so I moved close to one of the pillars for increased protection, and noticed that the movement was a circular oscillation: the building was twisting around its symmetry axis.

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Re: Dreaming Of Torsional Building Oscillations During An Earthquake

10/20/2012 9:48 PM

Did you put on a Chubby Checker record?

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