Towers need wind rethink

Changes in wind-loading testing on skyscapers, needed in the UAE

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By  Sean Cronin Published  September 10, 2005

Developers in the Middle East could be wasting millions of dollars on tower construction projects by over compensating on wind loading. That is the claim of Rowan Williams Davies and Irwin (RWDI) engineer Hadi Tahboub. He believes Municipal wind loading codes based on British standards do not reflect the different climatic conditions of the Gulf. “Designing according to the usual codes means you have to design with a conservative approach because you don’t know what forces are acting on the building,” said Tahboub. “But if you do a wind tunnel test, you get lower wind loads and you could end up using less materials,” he added. RWDI has been appointed wind engineering consultant on structures that include the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge and Taipei 101 in Taiwan.

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