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PARIS: The Eiffel Tower



April Break starts this Monday - and what a blessing that is! After a crazy weekend filled with sleepless nights, and Drowsy Chaperone performances, we'll be off from school...

And I'll be off to Paris...

Still in shock at how soon my trip is, we've been putting together plans for months, we finally have our agenda plotted. So I thought I'd take the next few blog to both brag...and explore some of the fzx-y aspects of the amazing sights I'll see on my vacation!

Obviously we'll be touring the Eiffel Tower. You can't go to Paris and skip that! It's extraordinarily beautiful, carefully built and designed, admired worldwide, extremely famous and...scientific? YES.

The Eiffel Tower was built in 1886 and designed by Gustave Eiffel. What many people don't know is that it was initially supposed to be destroyed after 20 years! However, the ingenious architect he was, Gustave Eiffel credited the tower with scientific purpose and therefore saved it from demolition!

Some scientific arguments Gustave Eiffel made include that the tower was prime for meteorological and astronomical observations, physics experiments, a strategy vantage as well as an optical telegraph communications point, and even a beacon for electric lighting and wind studies!

He stated, "It will be for everyone an observatory and a laboratory the likes of which has never before been available to science. It is the reason why, from day one, all of our scientists have encouraged me with their utmost sympathies."

No one wanted the tower destroyed! From 1889 on, many scientific measurements and experiments were conducted on the tower; apparatus such as barometers, anemometers, lightning conductors, and more were later installed on the tower. Gustave Eiffel himself had an office on the third floor for his personal astronomical and physiological observations.

Also on the third floor, the very day after the Eiffel Tower was inaugurated, Gustave Eiffel installed a meteorology laboratory!

His passion for aerodynamics called for a series of gravitational observations to likewise be conducted from the tower. Later, from 1903 to 1905 gravitational instruments were implemented.

He imagined, "an automatic system that would slide along the length of a cable stretched between the Tower's second floor and the ground."

He had a wind tunnel built at the foot of the tower and from August of 1909 to December of 1911 carried ouyt five thousand trials!

Additional scientific experiments on the tower include: Foucault's Pendulum, the mercury pressure gauge, physiological studies and in 1898 we mastered radio contact!

Eventually, the Eiffel Towers' innumerable scientific purposes and its use as an enormous antenna would save it from total destruction!

Needless to say, I can't wait to see it in person! Mainly for the reasons above, of course.


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