Smash Lab Season 1 DVD Set (Part 1)
Catch all of the devastating action in the first season of Smash Lab!
Meet the next generation in destruction instruction - a team of maverick engineers and designers that take on everyday technology and apply it in revolutionary new ways. First, they break down the technology to see how it works and then use their know-how to see how it could be used in a different, supersized way. Could bulletproof Kevlar protect an airliner from bombs? Could a car airbag be reinvented to stop a helicopter from sinking after ditching at sea? Find out as the Smash Lab team showcases a visual feast of fireballs, explosions, crashes, collapses, collisions and impacts, while putting their audacious plans to the test.
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Top Customer Reviews
My review is based on the first episode, I couldn't handle any more! Is this what passes for science these days? What a bunch of dumb shmucks! So they think they're going to stop a car traveling at 60 mph by using the same methodology used by airports to arrest an aircraft overshooting the runway?
We begin by watching a video of a large jet liner making an emergency stop using a material known as aerated concrete. Without any follow-on research, it was concluded this would be a good way to stop cars. Did anyone bother to ask the company that installed the arrestor strip at the airport the composition of the concrete? Did anyone bother to determine the weight and speed of the plane? Did anyone bother to determine the total force on the nose wheel as it sunk into the aerated concrete? In fact, did you see ANYONE do ANYTHING remotely resembling mathematics or physics?
Did anyone bother to consult highway engineers? Had these people done their homework, they would have learned that such barriers are, in fact, already in use on many highways cut through mountainous and extremely hilly terrains. Why this obsession with aerated concrete when there's a simpler and cheaper solution already in use -- SAND! Try driving your car through three foot of loose sand!
All of their "tests" were failures that could have been predicted in advance with pencil, paper and a calculator. A 4,000 lb car rests on 4 wheels, each supporting (roughly) 1,000 lb. For each wheel, the weight is distributed over an area of (guessing here) 6" x 6" (36 square inches); that gives us a rough surface pressure of 28 lbs per square inch.
In order for the car to "sink" into the concrete, the material must lose cohesion under a pressure of 28 psi -- something the so-called "scientist" could have easily tested with a SMALL sample of concrete back at the lab. Instead of guessing about the concrete-to-air ratio (i.e., low, medium, high), they could have gotten precise tables from the concrete company and determined the proper density ahead of time. Even, if you carefully lowered a 4,000 lb car equipped with regular tires onto a deep bed of sand, it will sink 3-4 inches right from the start, that's a lot of resistance to forward motion. Then one has to consider the "snowplow" affect as the forward motion causes the sand to build up in front of the tire.
But the really BIG mistake in this program was the failure to ask the REAL engineers who designed the airport runway stop-strip as to WHY they chose this particular material. But we'll never know as our intrepid "scientist" and "engineer" never bothered to ask such an important question. About the only person who seemed to know what he was doing was the stunt driver!
Airplanes are not cars, they're built to fly, not drive around on the ground. Stopping a huge jet liner without injuring crew and passengers is a whole different box of apples compared to stopping a car, any REAL scientist / engineer would have understood this at the outset. Instead, we see a bunch of clueless morons spending a lot of money on something that was destined to fail -- sorta like the way Government works.
How do you make a house wild fire proof? You wrap it in a fire retardent material like the stuff worn by nascar drivers... the stuff works... except when you leave the frayed edges exposed to heat... they light up... duh... stupid bad science spelled the doom for this show.