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IPFS News Link • Architecture

Zuckerberg is Making a Bunker But Bomb Resistant UHPC Buildings Could Become Common

• https://www.nextbigfuture.com, by Brian Wang

UHPC has 300 times the ductility and energy absorption of high performance concrete (HPC) and three to sixteen times the compressive strength of regular concrete.

A $100+ billion US Air Force contract given to Northrop Grumman to upgrade US ICBMs also includes funds to build new missile silos. Old missile silos have outdated weaker concrete materials given the transformation of these materials over the last 20 years and the continuing developments. In 2024, the total program cost was estimated above $131 billion, could grow further as the U.S. Secretary of Defense concludes a review by the summer. Program changes, such as making bigger silos and switching to more durable materials, have also raised costs. The cost overrun is most acutely felt in modernizing the 450 missile silos and their command infrastructure, which includes 7,500 miles of new cables. The program will also buy trucks, training, command buildings and 659 missiles. The 70 year old Minute Man silos used 2000 PSI concrete. There are some US silos with 5000 PSI concrete. This is far below the 40,000 to 60,000 PSI state of the art materials. In 2010, there was 150,000 cubic yards of 10,000-14000 PSI concrete for the Freedom Tower in New York.

About $500 million of the billions spent on the Freedom Tower was the UHPC concrete. It has stronger material than the old Minute Man silos. The large amount of UHPC has moved it into the mainstream higher end option for skyscrapers, bridges and roads.

In total there were 1,000 Minuteman missiles deployed from the 1960's into the early 1990's. The launch facility consists of a silo 12 feet in diameter and 80 feet deep made of reinforced concrete with a steel-plate liner.

Russian silos are reportedly hardened to 15,000-25,000 pounds per square inch (psi). China has hundreds of new nuclear silo with ultra hard concrete.


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