MHHM is celebrating Architecture month! We are exploring the built environment and features you may walk past everyday but may never have noticed before.
Have you seen this on a building? It can be the shape of a star, an x, or an S like this one but it does need to be made of metal. What is it? Why is it there?
It is called an anchor-plate also known as a wall washer or wall anchor. It was used in the past to connect exterior walls to door and roof beams using a metal tie rod to provide extra support. Brick buildings, like Macculloch Hall, remain stable under the force called compression but could bulge or bow due to weathering and a second force called tension. The anchor-plates spread the tension load across several bricks.
Metal is a building material that remains strong under tension. Together brick, metal anchor plates and tie rods create sturdy building construction.
For young learners:
- Read or listen to the story of The Three Little Pigs and visit www.sciencenetlinks.com for an educational activity.
For middle school students:
- Learn about tension and compression at www.teachengineering.org.
For adult learners:
- Visit www.sciencebuddies.org for “An Introduction to Materials Science.”
Topic: Celebrating Architecture
Age / Level: Elementary, Middle