Apparently, the engineers who designed the rotating amphitheater at the Hoover Dam took their proximity to Las Vegas too seriously. They took a gamble and designed the turntable, which holds 450 people, without using finite element analysis. Bad idea. Soon after the amphitheater opened, the turntable broke down. Engineering consultant David Dearth got a U.S. Department of Interior contract to determine the cause of the failure. He did use FEA, specifically MSC.visualNastran for Windows. Finding: Use stronger steel and bigger axle.
One way to keep a Formula One racing team moving at breakneck speed in the pit and at the test facility is to bring CAD drawings of the racing vehicleís parts down to the test facility and even out to the track.
Most of us would just as soon step on a cockroach rather than study it, but thatís just what researchers at UC Berkeley did in the pursuit of building small, nimble robots suitable for disaster-recovery and search-and-rescue missions.
Design engineers need to prepare for a future in which their electronic products will use not just one or two, but possibly many user interfaces that involve touch, vision, gestures, and even eye movements.
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