It is most unlikely to appreciate the cultures and achievements of the Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, and Arabs, with out figuring out whatever in their expertise. Rome, for instance, made advances in lots of components which have been thus misplaced and never regained for greater than a millenium. this can be a a professional but lucid account of the fantastic triumphs and the restrictions of historical and medieval engineering. This ebook systematically describes what's recognized concerning the evolution of irrigation works, dams, bridges, roads, development development, water and wind strength, automata, and clocks, with references to the social, geographical, and highbrow context.
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Extra info for A History of Engineering in Classical and Medieval Times
Dams within the form of arches did happen while, for instance, the engineers chanced on that the easiest rock lay alongside a curve. Dams of this form weren't, although, genuine arch dams; they have been of huge building and have been, in impression, gravity dams. The mathematical research of the forces performing on dams was once, after all, unknown to the early engineers; their designs have been established upon collected adventure, ninety nine intuition and sound constructional perform. the choice of an appropriate web site was once basically of the best value. the overall zone within which a dam used to be to be situated was resolute by means of hydrological and social elements, yet for a dam of any measurement the best position depended upon discovering a domain with sturdy load-bearing strata, ideally rock. greater than anything, the steadiness of a dam is determined by excavating all the way down to an excellent stratum, after which making sure that there's a robust bond among this stratum and the constitution. this can be fairly actual of early dams, because the buildings have been overdesigned through glossy regular, and the weakest element used to be for this reason the principles. as soon as the location were selected, the peak of the dam could were decided. to do that, a reasonably exact survey of the encircling region will be wanted. The engineers needed to have in mind major variables — the peak of the dam and the level of the proposed hydraulic method. The structures — even if for water provide or for irrigation or either — have been usually fed by means of gravity, so the peak of the dam used to be a significant component in settling on the dimensions of the procedure. however the peak of the dam used to be motivated through different elements: the neighborhood hydraulic stipulations; topography; defense; and the assets on hand for development. As consistently is the case within the layout of engineering tasks, the simplest compromise needed to be sought from a few probabilities. we frequently locate that water-raising machines have been erected on the subject of dams. it kind of feels not likely that those have been erected as an afterthought, yet fairly that their use used to be integrated within the making plans of the full hydraulic process. a hundred The number of the fabrics of development used to be motivated in part through the layout of the dam and partially by means of availability. Earth dams have been universal and are nonetheless in common use at the present time. they're completely passable for yes sorts of provider, supplied they've got a center of clay or different impermeable fabric and many overflow skill, yet they aren't rather appropriate for top dams. In sure components, significantly Iraq, earth dams have been virtually common; they have been (and are) rather enough for diverting rivers into canal structures and, as a minimum, the price of transporting huge amounts of stone could were prohibitive. In different parts, the place larger dams have been wanted, a few kind of masonry building was once helpful. this would be of dressed stone, mortared or now not, random rubble or concrete. particularly usually, dams have been built by way of construction masonry partitions with a niche among them, after which filling the distance with more cost-effective fabric reminiscent of earth or rubble.