Mega Structures

Mega Structures Cover

Mega Structures

Tallest, Longest, Biggest, Deepest

By Ian Graham

Firefly Books, Hardcover, 9781770851115, 128pp.

Publication Date: August 17, 2012


An in-depth look at the world's mightiest structures.

Stunning foldout pages, panels, diagrams, photographs and "Mega Facts" boxes make this book a stimulating read for all ages. Megastructures describes how and why these structures were designed and built. It explains the physics behind the designs, which allows buildings, dams or bridges to rise to incredible heights, withstand enormous pressures, and resist collapse from environmental forces.

The book is organized into four sections.

Towering Giants: skyscrapers, towers, monuments, offshore platforms

  • Burj Khalifa Skyscraper (gatefold) -- casts shadows on passing clouds
  • Troll A Gas Platform -- its legs weigh an astonishing 72,300 tons each
  • Pearl River Tower -- the first "green" skyscraper

Gigantic Lengths: wide and long, over and under

  • Types of bridges -- beam, arch, cantilever, suspension, cable-stayed
  • Oresund Link (gatefold) -- joins Denmark and Sweden
  • Gatthard Base Tunnel -- at 35 miles, the world's longest

Massive Monsters and Darkest Depths: stadiums, islands, dams

  • London's Olympic Stadium (gatefold) -- cut-away diagrams
  • Hoover Dam -- changing a river course
  • Palm Islands, Dubai -- palm-tree shaped artificial islands longest

Darkest Depths: mines, power stations, ice cores

  • Channel Tunnel (gatefold) -- a network of interlinking tunnels and passages
  • Thunder Horse Oil Field -- the deepest oil field ever found
  • Bingham Canyon Mine -- the world's deepest opencast mine longest

In each chapter, Megastructures also looks at Failures and Accidents, including such frightening events as windows falling out, roofs collapsing, floods and explosions. Future chapters in each section describe the monsters of tomorrow, like the pickle-shaped Gherkin tower, the Lake Vostok tunnel deep under Antarctic ice and the Bering Bridge linking the USA and Russia.

A glossary of words highlighted in the text, a resources section and an index round out this riveting book.

About the Author
Ian Graham is a science and technology expert. He has written more than 200 books on subjects ranging from space exploration, aircraft and military technology to astronomy, transport and forensic science.