Practical Failure Analysis

, Volume 1, Issue 4, pp 13–19 | Cite as

NIST structures division: They don’t build the buildings — they make the buildings better

  • M. A. Fleming
Features Interview


hen the hurricane winds blow, when the earthquakes rumble, when the floodwaters sweep through, when fire rages, why do some buildings come down while others stay up? Learning the answer — and then making improvements to the next generation building code — is the job of the Structures Division at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). These scientists and engineers investigate structural failures caused by natural forces, as well as those resulting from errors in design and construction or material flaws. And August is one of the months of the year in which the assessment teams spend the most time out on the field due to such natural disasters as the massive flood in Alaska in 1967, Hurricane Camille in 1969, Hurricane Andrew in 1992, and the 7.4 magnitude earthquake in Turkey in 1999.


Federal Emergency Management Agency Lightweight Concrete Northridge Earthquake Practical Failure Analysis Volume Structure Division 
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Copyright information

© ASM International - The Materials Information Society 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. A. Fleming
    • 1
  1. 1.ASM InternationalMaterials Park

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