By Sarah Blackman

Hyder Consulting has denied claims that the Burj Khlaifa could be a ‘storm machine’, despite recent speculation.

Mills: Burj has also been tested to withstand the strongest winds.
Mills: Burj has also been tested to withstand the strongest winds.

Last month, CWO reported that various architectural blogs have claimed that the temperature at the pinnacle of the Burj Khalifa is eight degrees lower than at the base, which could ultimately lead to the collapse of the building.

One German newspaper said that if a door was opened at the top of the building and at the podium level, as well as air locks in between, a storm could rush through the tower and destroy everything in its wake.

Speaking to Construction Week, John Mills, project director for Hyder, the design consultant for the Burj, said the effect described by the paper was genuine but there is no cause for concern.

“It is called a ‘stack effect’. Hyder has carried out separate research to try to harness the power which could be generated by this,” he said.

“The effect has been recognised on the Burj Khalifa and engineered out using air locks, which cannot be opened continuously.”

The world’s tallest tower has also been tested against severe wind conditions, according to Mills.

“Extensive wind tunnel testing took place during design and construction. Hyder also instigated physical building movement testing during construction, verifying correctly the designed building behaviour,” added Mills.


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