Category Archives: external sources

Yesterday, the remaining twin building at Moulivakkam was submitted to a controlled demolition

According to an Indian source: “A single Judge investigation committee and a Special Investigation Team (SIT) were formed by Tamil Nadu government to investigate the cause of the disaster. The major reason for this disaster was due to the carelessness of the builders in Chennai. The chief engineer handling the construction accepted his mistake and was fined by the police.”

Unfortunately the reasoning for the collapse was not given in detail. In this video the building shows a remarkable stiffness towards the end of the collapse. This contradicts the accusations that the building was prone to collapse at any time by its own self weight.


Urban Search and Rescue virtual training tool prototype

Here is a video and download link for the virtual training tool prototype created using Unreal Engine 4. The building model is from a collapse simulation of the Pyne Gould Corporation building in Christchurch, New Zealand. The simulation was made by Laurea UAS as a part of  INACHUS´ software validation cases .

Download link:!An_aRlulJVbggsllAar-_uxE9uMZhA

At the current stage of the prototype, the user will try to find and evacuate all victims in the scene. The prototype will hopefully be improved further by another student, so it can be brought to a point where it could be used as a virtual training tool to reduce costs in Urban Search and Rescue training. For example adding first aid, techniques and decision making according to the USaR principles could be implemented in the tool.

The project was done by Ville Tiira as an internship and thesis, which are a part of the Bachelor’s degree in Business Information Technology in Laurea UAS.


Destruction of concrete by lightning

The claim that the apartment building in Chennai (see post below) collapsed because of a lighting strike sounds- at first- far fetched, since such never was reported before. However, the Polytechnic Südwestfalen, Germany, made laboratory tests that showed that an enormous explosive power is mobilized, when the charge of a lighting jumps from one reinforcement iron to another (when not properly bound together). A possible lesson for engineers and builders in the industrialized countries as well.


© Polytechnic Südwestfalen, Prof. Dr.- Ing. Jan Meppelink

Literature survey for collapse cases

For our collapse simulation we are searching for well documented collapse cases. This would help to verify the authenticity of our simulation tool. Very surprisingly not much material can be found on internet. Collapse cases of buildings where the technical construction drawings can be found as well are rare. Thanks to Antonios Pomonis from the GEM (Global Earthquake Model) we learned about the CTV building (185 victims) and the PGC building (18 victims) that collapsed 2011 in Christchurch. Both buildings had unnecessary structural weaknesses.


The technical drawings of the CTV building can be downloaded from here

The technical drawings of the PGC building can be downloaded from here

The Global Earthquake Model GEM

The Global Earthquake Model GEM is a privately-publicly funded foundation. The foundation drives a global collaborative effort to develop high-quality resources for transparent assessment of earthquake risk and to facilitate their application for risk management around the globe. GEM supports a variety of working programs that last from 2009-2018. The web site is very well structured and the research areas very well documented. GEM could be a valuable cooperation partner for Inachus.