[Humor] FW: Engineering Problem

Jim C. Nasby jim at nasby.net
Thu Jun 29 16:21:00 CDT 2006

Here's an engineering problem:

A backhoe weighing 8 tons is on top of a flatbed trailer and heading
east on Interstate 70 near Hays, Kansas.  The extended shovel arm is
made of hardened refined steel and the approaching overpass is made of
commercial-grade concrete, reinforced with 1 1/2 inch steel rebar spaced
at 6-inch intervals in a criss-cross pattern layered at 1 foot vertical

Solve:  When the shovel arm hits the overpass, how fast do you have to
be going to slice the bridge in half?  (Assume no effect for headwind
and no braking by the driver...)

Extra Credit:  Solve for the time and distance required for the entire
rig to come to a complete stop after hitting the overpass at the speed
calculated above.


PS - It's comforting to know that whatever I screw up today it probably
won't be this bad!

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