Blog - The Stress Point

Insights from EDT experts, so you're equipped to tackle the next engineering challenge.

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How Old is Old?

How Old is Old? When I graduated from college in 1981, I was full of fire and ready to save the world. At the time, old to me was anyone over 40. Now, 39 years later I'm in my early 60's, and old to me is someone in their 80's. So age is relative to many of us. However, that is not the case for...

The Third Option

EDT was asked to review a proposal to replace a fire alarm system in a large multi-story hotel. The existing fire alarm panel had been damaged when a worker made a wiring error while connecting a new HVAC component to the fire alarm system.

Brick Veneer - Defined in the Code

Even with its long and trusted history, questions can arise regarding the performance of a brick veneer system. When these performance issues arise, the property owner, adjuster, or attorney are often barraged with various terms such as water-resistive barrier, veneer, or exterior wall envelope...

Why Is the AC Vent Wet?

Have you ever walked around in your socks at home, stepped onto the air conditioning (AC) vent and your socks got wet? Have you ever noticed water dripping from a ceiling AC vent? You might say to yourself, my vents are leaking water; do I need to call the plumber?

Turbines and Their Applications (Part I)

When you hear the word “Turbine” what is the first thing that comes to mind? Perhaps it is the gas-turbine engine of the last airplane you caught a ride on. The first turbine-powered aircraft wasn’t developed until WW2. That’s when the word “Turbine” entered common usage. Turbines, however, were in...

Creep

One day a homeowner exited his home to find water pouring down the driveway. Closer examination revealed water was coming from the water meter box and the plastic threaded connector attaching the transition pipe from the water meter to the house supply line had fractured due to continuous stress...

Voltage Surge or Lightning Strike?

Many times electrical engineers are confronted with trying to classify damages to electrical and electronic equipment as the result of a lightning strike. More specifically, was the damage the result of a surge or a direct lightning strike? The answer is “maybe neither.” The chances are the damage...

How Did the Snow Do This?

In forensic investigations, engineers may not always have access to all the information they desire. Consider a 70-year old building that was damaged, following a snowfall. In this scenario, the building is one of three attached structures with curved (barrel-style) roofs. So, how did the snow do...

Keep Your Head Out of the Clouds

Engineers should never have their heads in the clouds, and a good engineer would never be as subjective as Hamlet and Polonius were when observing the shapes of clouds in Shakespeare's "Hamlet". However, pattern recognition is not just the stuff of playwrights... the ability to see patterns is key...