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How does this rock not break?

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55 utenti della rete avevano questa curiosità: Spiegami: How does this rock not break?

‘Potato Chip’ Rock in San Diego, California is a popular tourist attraction that sees hundreds of people hiking out everyday to get their picture standing on it.
Normally photos like this would have me concerned about people destroying nature but it has been around for decades and for whatever reason it seems to be very strong.

What kind of rock is this and how is it so thin yet able to support hundreds of pounds of weight without breaking?

Ed ecco le risposte:

It’s like a folded piece of pizza – the curvature strengthens the structure in a way that resists stress. If it wasn’t as rounded it would likely have chipped off a long time ago but the unique piece of rock just happens to have the right shape that will help maintain integrity.

There’s a nice Numberphile video about curvature and pizza here, that would pertain to the shape of the rock:

It is not unusual for “How does that thing not fall over?” rock features to fall over. Just because they may have taken many centuries to get their current shape does not mean they have centuries left to go. To give a few examples among many, the rock feature called the Gendarme in Skye, Scotland, the feature with the same name in Seneca Rocks, West Virginia, and the Old Man of the Mountain at Cannon Cliffs, New Hampshire, all fell off in the past 40 years.

And right after the “thumbs up”, the rock breaks… sending this family sliding down the hill on a stone sled.

And the little boy screams :

” Now this is podracing! “