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Category Fifth Hurricane Irma

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Horizon Essay Rough Draft Introduction: In August 2017, Miami residents faced the devastating Category Five Hurricane Irma, costing the state of Florida more than 100 billion dollars and killing eighty-four people. Hurricane Irma is one of the most disastrous hurricanes ever to have hit Florida, but it is not the only one. Between 1851 and 2017, forty destructive hurricanes struck Florida, impacting the lives of thousands. Situated in Miami, Florida, along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, Horizon has multiple innovative and technologically advanced systems in place to minimize damage from hurricanes. Horizon, founded in 2121, has nearly 500,000 residents, with 16% of the population above the age of sixty-five and 20.3% below the age of eighteen. Daily Life: With roughly fifty inches of rain each year, no snow, and its humid, subtropical climate, Horizon is an ideal place for families to take residence. The city’s population is largely made up of middle and upper-class families. Public schools in Horizon are ranked second in the state, with 97% graduating high school.

As nearly all citizens receive a proper education, crime rates are low, with only one crime per every thousand citizens. Citizens have numerous job opportunities, particularly regarding tech, ocean farms, and architecture pertaining to the domes and advanced buildings in the city. Horizon provides other services, including healthcare to all citizens, particularly low or no-income families, and public transportation, as in airports, buses, and airports. Multiple parks are located in Horizon, as well as libraries, which are inside schools to ensure that all schools are equipped with books to satisfy the educational needs of the students. Hurricanes: A hurricane is a large rotating storm with high-speed winds of at least seventy-four miles per hour. When a hurricane strikes, it can have catastrophic effects on the daily lives of residents. Citizens may take months or even years to return to their normal lives, and the traumatizing memories stay with them forever.

Even the short-term damage of hurricanes, such as demolished houses, uprooted trees and power lines, contaminated water, flooding, and separated families, drastically affect the lives of residents. Hurricanes have many long-lasting effects. Salt and other contaminants in the water ruin agriculture, the violent waves uproot ocean farms, and damaged sewer systems can potentially cause viruses, diseases, or even an epidemic. A hurricane impacts each part of Horizon’s population differently. Many working adults lose their jobs because of an economic decline due to damage to the buildings or structures they work at. Damage to homes affects the entire population, particularly the elderly and economically disadvantaged without the money or ability to relocate or rebuild their homes, potentially causing an increase in homelessness. Domes: Horizon has numerous systems installed to ensure the safety of residents in the unlikely event of the hurricane making landfall.

Located in the center of the city are two transparent domes made of stiff layered polymer nanocomposites. Polymer nanocomposites, the ideal material for the structures, contain nanoscopic inorganic particles, which are dispersed in an organic particle matrix in order to dramatically improve the performance properties of the polymer. The layer orientation of polymer nanocomposites exhibits stiffness, strength, and dimensional stability, to ensure that the dome can withstand the intense force of the hurricanes. Due to the nanometer length scale which minimizes scattering of light, nanocomposites are transparent, allowing sunlight to reach the dome. Polymer nanocomposites are inexpensive, costing only seven dollars per kilogram. The material is as strong as steel but lighter and transparent. The domes require an immense amount of power, so multiple panels are on each side, the power from which will be stored in multiple large lithium-ion battery packs, along with wind power from turbines and hydraulic power from the sea wall. LIthium-ion is the most expensive, but it has the longest lifespan. It has the second highest depth of discharge. Two roads lead directly from the two hospitals to the domes to accommodate for those suffering or recovering from illness. Public transportation, mainly driverless vehicles, are provided to others, and special needs are taken into account, making domes easily accessible.

Services such as housing, food, and water are provided to those staying in the structure; in addition, inside each dome is a small hospital replete with medical supplies. With a means of communication between the two domes, hospitals, and other important city buildings, Horizon’s domes ensure all residents are accounted for. While the domes mainly function to protect residents from hurricanes, they will be used regularly for commercial. Ocean Systems: Horizon has a movable sea wall along its coast. ? feet high and made of concrete and metal rods, the sea wall is a physical barrier that protects the city from the violent waves of the hurricane. The sea wall is usually open to allow citizens and tourists to access the ocean, but when a hurricane is predicted, multiple alarms along the coast go off to warn people in the ocean to head to safety on land as fast as possible. Coastguards monitor the premises in case anyone needs assistance. An ocean farm, ? offshore, collects seaweed, fish, and other shellfish, which are Horizon’s main exports. The farm consists of various nets and cages that trap sea life underwater. Workers reel in everything collected twice a day. No experience is needed to work at an ocean farm, various positions are available, and there is substantial pay, making it the perfect job for many of Horizon’s residents.

Permeable Floor: To prevent flooding, Horizon has permeable floors made of a concrete pavement solution that absorb the water that they encounter, sending it through a drainage and filtration system, allowing the water to be recycled, and into the groundwater, also giving the ground moisture, so the city has more greenery. The material is 20%- 35% holes that allow water to pass through. An impermeable membrane, which collects the water to be filtered, lies underneath the layer. The material can absorb up to 800 gallons per minute. Horizon’s warm climate is perfect for the system, as freezing waters can damage the concrete. Other Disaster Preparedness Features: Damage to buildings, residential, commercial, and industrial, would not only result in major cleanup requirements but would also affect the jobs of thousands. All houses have geodesic dome roofs or are entirely domes, as cupolas, or small, dome-shaped buildings, have lower drag coefficients and can withstand more wind than regular rectangular or triangular roofs or buildings. Dome-shaped houses are sprayed with polyurethane foam on the interior to fix the reinforcing bars, steel bars used to reinforce structures under tension, in place to ensure the insulation of and support the final structures.

The reinforcing bar is attached to the outermost layer of the foam with clips, and its frame is sprayed with many inches of concrete. With a ring beam-reinforced concrete foundation, which gives the bases of the building a circular shape, the cupolas maintain stability, even under the immense pressure of a hurricane. Airform, made of a polyester fabric to prevent degradation from ultraviolet radiation, is attached to the bases of the structures and inflated with an air blower. The Airform contains an airlock so that residents can enter even when the structure is inflated. The same principles are applied to the emergency domes. Buildings all contain internal steel welded shear walls. Steel walls exhibit ductility, dissipate energy, make for thinner walls, take a short time to construct, and lower the weight of the buildings, as the foundation and overall seismic loads of the buildings are reduced. Tempered glass replaces regular, or annealed, glass in the buildings, as it is much stronger. If the tempered glass does break despite its strength, it fractures into small, harmless pieces, unless regular glass which can shatter into jagged dangerous shards. Power Grid: Horizon has an innovative power grid built to withstand hurricanes of all forces.

A normal electric grid would rely on power lines, coming from one main generator, to run through the entire city. In hurricanes, power lines and power transmitters can be uprooted, leaving the city powerless; however, our electric grid ensures that the city is always able to safe and sound. Turbines are inside the sea wall, providing the city with power from strong hurricanes. Wires are underground to prevent the wires from short-circuiting from contact with water. Solar panels are placed on the sides of the emergency dome, along with a lithium-ion battery pack, to ensure that all emergency systems are sufficiently powered during a hurricane. Horizon relies on LED lights for illumination, as they are more energy efficient and last longer than other light bulbs. Restoration: To fund replacement and reparation of Horizon after a hurricane, an 8% welfare tax is placed on residents.

If all procedures go as planned, the wind turbines and solar panels are in ideal condition and have generated enough power for the city; in addition, the permeable concrete roads drain all of the excess water, preventing flooding, so the main focus is on the rebuilding of the city’s power sources. In the worst-case scenario, the wind turbines, solar panels, and seawall break during the hurricane, leaving the city with no power, and the roads fail to drain any of the water, resulting in flooding and damages in the infrastructure of the city. Repairing systems and structures in Horizon may cost the city an excessive amount, especially if certain buildings or parts cannot be salvaged. Spending time raising money for repairs may also take attention away from the welfare of the public, leaving no energy or electricity for some. To save money, the city monopolizes the trading business with the help of the ocean farm. In the event of the solar panels shorting-out after a disaster, electrical engineers will re-engineer the solar panels to continue working while new solar panels, made of both salvaged spare parts and previously stored parts, are installed. Wind turbines can break if hit with rushing water, and be re-installed in a manner similar to the solar panels.

Engineers: Civil, electrical, mechanical, and hydrological engineers are involved in designing and redesigning Horizon. Civil engineers efficiently design, build, and maintain emergency infrastructures after hurricanes to ensure that families have places to live. More specifically, they rebuild roads, bridges, railways, energy and water systems, and waste networks. Electrical engineers bring power back to homes and fix any electrical problems. Hydrological engineers protect the coast from hurricanes by building sea walls and hurricanes in the water. Mechanical engineers are the most helpful in bringing back power to Horizon. They restore power to homes and shelters. Horizon not only provides a welcoming environment for families or individuals of all types, but the city also has an innovative power grid, emergency domes, a seawall, an ocean farm, and concrete floors made of a semipermeable membrane, features keeping Horizon and its residents safe during the unlikely event of a hurricane.

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