Levee reconstruction in New Orleans, one of the largest construction tasks of the decade, required both brute strength and high precision. Tons of soil was moved, but soil types and amounts had to be monitored constantly. Hayward Baker, a leading geotechnical construction company, developed a new mixing technique to get the right soil qualities for long-term stability. Hollow stem augers and paddles blended materials as they were put in place. Soil characteristics, including moisture levels, were monitored using National Instrumentsí Compact Fieldpoint hardware and LabVIEW software. That tool combination also helped Hayward Baker document its activity, an important factor in the government project.
Californiaís plan to mandate an electric vehicle market isnít the first such undertaking and certainly wonít be the last. But as the Golden State ratchets up for its next big step toward zero-emission vehicle status in 2018, it might be wise to consider a bit of history.