Grand Canyon Skywalk

Posted by batman on Oct 15th, 2009
2009
Oct 15

skywalk01.jpg

Extract from the Official Site

The Grand Canyon Skywalk is an architectural marvel. The Skywalk was completed in March 2007 after 2.5 years and 30 million dollars worth of hard work and engineering. This structure weighs an astonishing 1.571 million pounds, and was built to withstand an excess of 71 million pounds in weight on top of it. (That’s the equivalent of 71 fully-loaded 747 airliners piled one on top of the other!)

This amazing ability to withstand weight as well as the forces of nature is due to the Skywalk’s 2 inch thick steel frame which is designed specifically to flex in the heat, cold, and wind. This frame is anchored to the Grand Canyon by casens and micro piles measuring 46 feet down into the solid bedrock.

The specially-made German glass which forms the platform for our guests to walk the experience also plays a big part in the durability and beauty of Skywalk. Each of the 46 panes forming the walkway are constructed of 5-layers of glass bonded together and laminated, weighing in at 1,200 lbs a piece, and making the glass incredibly strong while still providing a crystal-clear view of the canyon below.

skywalk03.jpg

Extract from Wikipedia

The Skywalk protrudes 20 metres beyond the edge of the canyon. The walls and floor are built from glass 50.8 mm thick. The glass appears tinted on both edges; however, this is a protective cushioning for the glass. This running along the sides can be used as a sort of safe zone by nervous visitors. While the Skywalk is capable of holding 70 tons of weight (the equivalent of 800 people weighing 80 kg each), the permitted capacity is limited to 200 persons. Visitors are provided with shoe covers to protect them from slipping and to prevent the glass floor from being scratched.

Construction began in March 2004. It was rolled onto the edge of the canyon on March 7, 2007, after passing several days of testing to replicate weather, strength, and endurance conditions of its final destination. The structure was built to withstand up to 160 km/h winds and a magnitude 8 earthquake. Tuned mass dampers were used to minimize vibration from wind and pedestrians.

skywalk02.jpg




High Definition Image

View this extraordinary image of the Skywalk – 14,647 × 6,001 pixels, file size: 43.43 MB




References:

http://www.grandcanyonskywalk.com

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Canyon_Skywalk

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/12/Grandcanyon_skywalk_hd.jpg


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5 Responses

  1. panoramic photo stitching panoramic photo stitching Says:

    Great images!!

  2. Paul Bates Paul Bates Says:

    The Grand Canyon Skywalk looks amazing! What a view! That would be a crazy place to get some nice shots.

    Paul Bates
    Landscape Stock Photography

  3. Moi Moi Says:

    The Sky walk is simply one big rip off. I went there on December 11, 2009. The cost is $43 for a bus trip (about 5 minutes), $32 for the Skywalk ticket and no cameras or personal items allowed. After getting the explanation from the staff that people threw staff down to just watching them falling (I guess that included cameras) the real reason surfaced up. You are escorted by a photographer who is taking a picture of you and for you. I f you want the picture, you need to say goodbye to another $30 (per each photo). They scan everybody through a metal detector to make sure that cameras are not sneaked in. The view of the skywalk is disappointing. The spot is not the best in the Grand Canyon to say the least. The view from the visitor center in the south rim is way more impressive and cost much less. This place is nothing but a TOURIST TRAP. IT is highly recommended TO AVOID THIS PLACE.

  4. Gary Gary Says:

    Moi is absolutely correct. Although he failed to mention the 15 miles of winding, dirt road you have to travel to get there.

  5. batman batman Says:

    it is unfortunate, as it ‘seems’ to be such a great place to visit.

    the problem is that most people will have this place on their ‘bucket list’ – and will just have to see it – regardless of what others say. when they have seen it, they will agree with you – but unfortunately not beforehand.

    and the operators know this – they can simply charge what they want – because some people will pay – regardless…

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