This steel structure is engineered to survive a global catastrophe

We don’t know how it might happen, but one thing is certain: the human race is never that far away from complete disaster. Whether it’s man-made (war, famine or long-awaited zombie outbreak) or something completely unexpected (meteor strike, alien invasion or the return of Line Dancing), the idea that what we know of human civilisation could be erased is ever-present.

Thankfully, we have a bit of human engineering ingenuity to help protect what, and who, we can. There are a number of human-made structures around the planet that are designed to protect its contents from anything happening in the outside world. This creation is just one of them. It’s built out of steel, granite and sheer determination to keep the human race going for as long as possible.

Cheyenne Mountain construction 1962

Cheyenne Mountain – the underground village built on springs

Cheyenne Mountain is a great example of how engineers have combined naturally occurring geology with carefully crafted steel structures to house an installation safe enough to withstand any disaster. Originally designed to house the North American Aerospace Defence Command operation centre, the installation inside Mount Cheyenne occupies 4 and a half acres of space, encased in a giant air-tight bubble of steel plating. The entire system is housed on top of thousands of metal springs, which protect the insides from shocks such as, you know, nuclear explosions.

Cheyenne Mountain

Affixing the walls to the rocks are 115,000 bolts that are routinely maintained to this day, in order to keep them firmly in place if the unthinkable happens. Inside the complex are is a miniature city, complete with the day-to-day amenities you would expect from a fledgling suburb like a barbershop, banks, dry cleaners and so on.

Cheyenne Mountain construction 1962

Cheyenne Mountain construction 1962

Steel is not only used to provide strength and security against the outside world, but also protect the vital electronics inside from electromagnetic pulses and radio interference. To accomplish this, giant steel doors seal the installation shut, each weighing an incredible 43 tons apiece and swinging 15 metres wide.

Cheyenne Mountain present day

However, let’s imagine that these fail-safe measures fail, and traces of life have been wiped off the map. What then? Hopefully the Global Seed Vault will be the answer. This gigantic installation deep in arctic snow-capped mountain houses a million different species of plant life, ready to be deployed in a world that may have forgotten them. It’s basically a giant version of Noah’s Ark with plants instead of animals.

GLobal Seed Vault

Looking for a DIY steel solution, compared to this mega-fortress, however? There’s plenty of dirt-cheap survival retreats to live out the rest of your days.

At ShapeCUT we’ve helped make steel installations of all shapes and sizes, ready to withstand the toughest elements the outside world has to offer. Contact ShapeCUT today to find out what we can build for you.

Image Source: Crop Trust, Arstechnica, Atomic Annihilation, Wikimedia