Bridge safety

tiny magnetic particles could help prevent buildings and bridges from toppling during earthquakes or hurricanes, say engineers at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, usa . The particles form a part of a switchable magnetic damping system that cuts in before any damage is done.

Construction engineers incorporate dampers into their designs to absorb some of the energy from external forces, prolonging a structure's life and preventing collapse during catastrophic events. Damping methods currently used in buildings include rubber-like materials built into the structure, and flexible mechanisms that isolate the building's base from its superstructure so that the structure can