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Re: Facing mistakes in structural design

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It's a quote from a movie.  Guess the movie.

On Fri, Jan 30, 2009 at 7:34 AM, David Topete <d.topete73(--nospam--at)> wrote:
"What's a widget?"

On Fri, Jan 30, 2009 at 4:48 AM, Gary L. Hodgson and Assoc. <design(--nospam--at)> wrote:
Toot away. We all need those feel good moments to compensate for those other times when you wake up in the middle of the night and say did I forget to framitize the widget.

Rhkratzse(--nospam--at) wrote:
IIRC it was a grad student, and since this was 20+/- yrs ago they're probably at the top of their profession by now.

My memory is that the critical thing is that the Citicorp building has only 4 columns around the perimeter, but they're not at the corners, they're in the middle of each side.  The design, again IIRC, was based on analyses in the X-X and Y-Y directions, but not in the diagonal direction, which is what the student caught.

Not to toot my own horn, but in 1965 or '66, on my very first engineering job, I was figuring the loads due to a four-legged traveling crane and I came to the conclusion that diagonal forces controlled, just as they did in the Citicorp building's columns.

Ralph Hueston Kratz, S.E.
Richmond CA USA

In a message dated 1/29/09 7:30:58 PM, seaint04(--nospam--at) writes:
I'm wondering who that student was and what is he/she doing today?


-----Original Message-----
From: David Fisher [mailto:dfisher(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Thursday, January 29, 2009 11:09 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: RE: Facing mistakes in structural design


That was the Citicorp Center in New York:

Fascinating article...

David L. Fisher SE PE
International Project Manager
The Food Water Energy Company/movewithus international
Trinity House
Cambridge Business Park
Cambridge CB4 0WZ
United Kingdom

312.622.0409 GSM mobile


-----Original Message-----
From: Jorge Jimenez [mailto:joraljim(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Thursday, January 29, 2009 11:08 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Facing mistakes in structural design

I remember a story of a group of graduate students that found a design flaw
in a high-rise building for wind effects considerations. They called the
attention to the structural engineer who made the design. The designer, a
renowned structural engineer, courageously disclosed to the public his
mistake. The building was in use and then needed an important retrofitting.
Do you remember the name of this structural engineer or have knowledge of
similar and recognized circumstances?

Jorge Jimenez, PE

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David Topete, SE

David Topete, SE