The Physics
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Mass of the World Trade Center

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Bibliographic Entry Result
(w/surrounding text)
Eagar, Thomas W., and Christopher Musso. Why Did the World Trade Center Collapse? Science, Engineering, and Speculation. 2001. JOM. "The total weight of the structure was roughly 500,000 t, but wind load, rather than the gravity load, dominated the design" 450,000,000 kg
(each tower)
World Trade Center History. Fact Monster. Family Education Network. 2003. "Weighed 500,000 tons" 450,000,000 kg
(each tower)
World Trade Center Facts. Fox News Top Stories. 12 September 2001. "More than 200,000 tons of steel - far more than the amount required for the construction of the Verrazano Narrows Bridge - was used in the World Trade Center's construction."

" The 425,000 cubic yards of concrete used in building the World Trade Center is enough to build a five-foot wide sidewalk from New York City to Washington, DC."
930,000,000 kg
Ashley, Steven. When the Twin Towers Fell. Scientific American. 11 October 2001. "The gravity loads (weight) produced by the towers at their bases were on the order of 500,000 tons, Fowler said." 450,000,000 kg
(each tower)
Craven, Jackie. Great Buildings. "Each tower weighed about 500,000 tons." 450,000,000 kg
(each tower)

Designed by the architect Minoru Yamasaki, the North Tower of the World Trade Center was opened in 1970 and the South Tower was opened in 1972. They ranked as the world's tallest buildings until the year 1974 when the Sears Tower in Chicago was built. The North tower, stood 417 meters tall and the south tower stood 415 meters tall, each with 110 stories. About 50,000 people worked in the World Trade Center on a typical day.

The former World Trade Center cost more than $400 million dollars to build. The two buildings had many amazing features. Through strong winds and storms, each building would sway three feet away from its true center. When standing on the observation deck (approximately 1,300 feet above ground) you would be able to see 45 miles in every direction. The structure was designed to withstand natural disasters but on September 11, 2001 over 2,000 people were killed when the towers collapse from the rising temperatures of the fires destroying the infrastructure of the building.

Both towers were built out of steel frames, glass, and concrete slabs on steel truss joists. A single tower consists of 90,000,000 kg (100,000 tons) of steel, 160,000 cubic meters (212,500 cubic yards) of concrete and 21,800 windows. One single tower has a mass of about 450,000,000 kilograms (500,000 tons). The interior design of the World Trade Center contains 240 vertical steel columns, which were called the Vierendeel trusses. These steel columns maintained the tower's structure and helped to create an extremely "light"building.

Eric Chen -- 2004