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Old 07-02-09, 01:54 PM   #1
Allen
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Sears Tower unveils 103rd floor glass balconies

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CHICAGO (AP) Visitors to the Sears Tower's new glass balconies all seem to agree: The first step is the hardest.
The balconies are suspended 1,353 feet in the air and jut out four feet from the building's 103rd floor Skydeck. Their transparent walls, floor and ceiling leave visitors with the impression they're floating over the city.







All I can say is not just no, but hell naw.
No way, no how.

Get to feel the building swaying too.
I wouldn't even walk by one of those things.
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Old 07-02-09, 01:59 PM   #2
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Something similiar to ( a glass walk) this has been built overlooking the Grand Canyon.. I'd do neither.
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Old 07-02-09, 02:00 PM   #3
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Four feet isn't very far.

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The balconies can hold five tons, and the glass is an inch-and-a-half thick, officials said.
1.5" glass can support five tons?
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Old 07-02-09, 02:04 PM   #4
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Havent you seen the star trewk movies? It's secretly transparent aluminum, the government doesn't want us to know. It can evidently support sea water and humpback whales.
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Old 07-02-09, 02:12 PM   #5
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since I'm acrophobic, I'd never be there.
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Old 07-02-09, 02:13 PM   #6
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Whose read the report a small asteroid passed thru the hand of a German teenager.. Anyone completed studies on the ability of the glass balcony to withstand metrorite impacts.? Could happen.?
..
A YOUNG boy will be his mates' hero for a long time after survivng a direct hit by a meteorite, travelling at nearly 50,000 kilometers per hour.

Fourteen-year-old Gerrit Blank was hit in the hand by a pea-sized meteorite that left him in severe pain and with a three-inch scar

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,27574...-13762,00.html
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Old 07-02-09, 02:15 PM   #7
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since I'm acrophobic, I'd never be there.
You're afraid of acrobats too?
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Old 07-02-09, 02:21 PM   #8
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Whose read the report a small asteroid passed thru the hand of a German teenager.. Anyone completed studies on the ability of the glass balcony to withstand metrorite impacts.? Could happen.?
..
A YOUNG boy will be his mates' hero for a long time after survivng a direct hit by a meteorite, travelling at nearly 50,000 kilometers per hour.

Fourteen-year-old Gerrit Blank was hit in the hand by a pea-sized meteorite that left him in severe pain and with a three-inch scar

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,27574...-13762,00.html
I'll accept that he was hit by shrapnel from the meteorite hitting the ground, but I'm not buying that something moving at >45,000 feet a second wouldn't have vaporized the kid's arm.
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Old 07-02-09, 02:29 PM   #9
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You're afraid of acrobats too?
I much prefer gymnasts
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Old 07-02-09, 03:04 PM   #10
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1.5" glass can support five tons?
The loads on the windows at major aquariums are actually a lot more than that. Look at the picture of this balcony though. It's suspended from steel framework over your head, so it doesn't impede the view.

This is probably some sort of polycarbonate rather than real glass, which has a yield strength of over 8000 psi. A slice of that sort of material less than an inch wide will support five tons. It could also be tempered or layered glass.

However, there will be stress concentrations around the fasteners, plus a designed-in factor of safety, so the structure sees nowhere near that much stress. A professional engineer had to place his career on the line to sign off on the design in order for it to get built. It's probably far safer than your front porch.

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Whose read the report a small asteroid passed thru the hand of a German teenager.. Anyone completed studies on the ability of the glass balcony to withstand metrorite impacts.? Could happen.?
..
A YOUNG boy will be his mates' hero for a long time after survivng a direct hit by a meteorite, travelling at nearly 50,000 kilometers per hour.

Fourteen-year-old Gerrit Blank was hit in the hand by a pea-sized meteorite that left him in severe pain and with a three-inch scar

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,27574...-13762,00.html
Meteors that small don't have enough energy to maintain any meaningful velocity by the time they reach the ground. Drag slows them down to terminal velocity, which depending on density and size is usually about 100-200 mph. It's probably about like getting shot by a BB gun.

It's also the only recorded case in the entire history of the world of a person getting hit directly by a meteor. Likewise, damage to buildings from meteors is extremely rare and generally not very severe.

The biggest risk is probably from the guys who have to the wash the windows from the outside.


I'd walk out on it with little more consideration than a second glance. Same for the transparent walkway over the edge of the Grand Canyon, except I guess that's on private land and they charge an arm, a leg, and a couple barrels of crude oil to see it.
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Old 07-02-09, 03:38 PM   #11
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I'd go out there. Looks WAY cool. I'd go onto the Grand Canyon glass bridge, too. The CN Tower in Toronto has a glass floor section, and the ground is so far away that it doesn't even look 3D. I think I remember a glass floor on part of the Eiffel Tower, too. There's also a scenic overlook in Norway that I want to visit that looks kind of like a logging trough that drops away over a cliff -- there's only a couple glass panes to block things from falling overboard.
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Old 07-02-09, 04:05 PM   #12
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I'd like to see more balconies like that. It definitely is something new and interesting to go see.
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Old 07-02-09, 04:17 PM   #13
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I'd be okay with the heights aspect, but me visiting would actually require me to set foot in Chicago, which is about as unlikely as a thing can be.
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Old 07-02-09, 04:21 PM   #14
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Who cleans the outside part?
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Old 07-02-09, 05:08 PM   #15
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I would like to go (being under 10 min away from Sears Tower) but I'm slightly afraid of heights so we shall see.
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Old 07-02-09, 05:33 PM   #16
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I don't do heights...or swaying buildings.

I got on the observation deck on one of the Twin Towers in 2000...scariest experience I've had. Never again.
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Old 07-02-09, 06:10 PM   #17
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I would like to go (being under 10 min away from Sears Tower) but I'm slightly afraid of heights so we shall see.
Pictures please.
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Old 07-02-09, 06:11 PM   #18
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Who cleans the outside part?
They retract for the robot window washers. Seriously.
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Old 07-02-09, 06:32 PM   #19
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I'd be okay with the heights aspect, but me visiting would actually require me to set foot in Chicago, which is about as unlikely as a thing can be.
Why's that? Are you wanted there?
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Old 07-02-09, 06:56 PM   #20
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It would be a fun place to do the nasty at noon....a nooner don't ya know.
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Old 07-02-09, 07:04 PM   #21
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No effing way! No... negative... never...
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Old 07-02-09, 07:30 PM   #22
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I did not see the roll of paper towels to clean up after people pee themselves after walking out there.

No. Way.
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Old 07-02-09, 07:40 PM   #23
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Looks like fun. Finally a reason to visit Chicago...or not.
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Old 07-02-09, 08:15 PM   #24
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I would do it in a trice and tap dance on the glass floor, as well.
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Old 07-02-09, 10:17 PM   #25
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They retract for the robot window washers. Seriously.
That's kind of fun. It will be more fun in 10 years when the seals on the windows need replacing, but that's part of the cost of such a novelty.
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