Last year The Simpsons Movie arrived in theaters with a storyline that saw the US government placing a dome over the entire town of Springfield because the place had become too toxic and too dangerous. Well, get ready to have your mind blown, because a team of engineers actually want to place a dome over the city of Houston, Texas. Yup, this is indeed true, but the dome wouldn't be to protect the city from pollution (like in the Simpsons movie) -- instead, it would help protect Houston from severe heat and storms that could potentially destroy the city. Here are some facts from the Discovery Channel website:
-- The structure is made of hexagons stacked in a honeycomb pattern. But to make the surface curve, 12 pentagons are strategically positioned to give the surface a dome shape.
-- Massive doors can be closed to insulate the city from hurricanes and other inclement weather. A concrete foundation ring 3.1 miles around anchors the dome deep into the ground.
-- Because of the height and size of the dome, cranes and scaffolding aren't practical. Engineers are planning on using heavy-lift helicopters and a new type of helium-filled dirigible to move pre-assembled pieces to the top of the 1,500-foot high dome.
-- The Houston dome's surface area will stretch over 21 million square feet, making it the biggest structure with the largest roof in the world. More than 369,000 narrow steel struts form the frame, and almost 75,000 of them could fail before the dome becomes unstable.
I could never see something like this happening in our lifetime without people absolutely freaking out beyond belief, though in the future it may be the only way to protect ourselves from global warming. What do you think?