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Manmade "Wall of Wind" creates hurricane force winds to test construction -- Science Nation


Manmade "Wall of Wind" creates hurricane force winds to test construction

A Category 5 hurricane is a monster of a storm that most people would want to avoid. But, civil engineer Arindam Chowdhury actually recreates those monster hurricane force winds in hopes of helping us better prepare for the real thing. Chowdhury and his team at Florida International University (FIU) and the International Hurricane Research Center designed a 15-foot-tall "Wall of Wind," aptly nicknamed WOW. The wall is made up of 12 giant fans. They can create the intensity of a Category 5 hurricane with 157 mile-an-hour winds. The team's goal is to see if low-rise structures and building materials can withstand the same wind forces they would face in a full-blown hurricane.

Credit: National Science Foundation

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