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News: Ice Age blast 'ravaged America'
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Mothman

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Christian Kielbasa
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« Reply #30 on: June 05, 2009, 01:35:04 pm »

Wreckage Analysis Of The Fallen Silver Bridge
The bridge failure was found to be due to a defect in a single link, eyebar 330, on the north of the Ohio subsidiary chain, the first link below the top of the Ohio tower. A small crack was formed through fretting wear at the bearing, and grew through internal corrosion, a problem known as stress corrosion cracking. The crack was only about 0.1 inch deep when it went critical, and it broke in a brittle fashion. Growth of the crack was probably exacerbated by residual stress in the eyebar created during manufacture. When the lower side of the eyebar failed, all the load was transferred to the other side of the eyebar, which then failed by ductile overload. The joint was now only held together by three eyebars, and another slipped off the pin at the centre of the bearing, so the chain was completely severed. Collapse of the entire structure was inevitable since all parts of a suspension bridge are in equilibrium with one another. Witnesses afterward estimated that it took only about a minute for the whole bridge to disappear.

See the videos above for more detail on the failure modes of the Silver Bridge.

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