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December 3 2012

Team uses fractal geometry to build lighter structures

A team made up of members from several European countries has published a paper in Physical Review Letters describing a technique they've developed for using fractal geometry to build structures that maintain their strength despite weighing significantly less.

The researchers began their study by noting that many structures in the world already demonstrate some degree of fractal geometry. The Eifel Tower for example, they note was essentially built using a single type of metal rod that is replicated in different sizes throughout the tower to minimize weight. What's not been the case however, they add is a predefined way to implement fractal geometry into structures in general. To rectify that, they have come up with a process that allows for creating metal beams that take advantage of fractal properties.

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