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NOVA | Hagia Sophia: Istanbul’s Ancient Mystery

Posted by WMHT Web Editor on

Preview How has this unique structure, built on a seismic fault, survived centuries of quakes?

Watch Sunday, May 22, 2016 at 11am on WMHT TV

Istanbul’s magnificent Hagia Sophia has survived on one of the world’s most active seismic faults, which has inflicted a dozen devastating earthquakes since Hagia Sophia was built in 537 AD. As Istanbul braces for the next big quake, a team of architects and engineers is investigating Hagia Sophia’s seismic secrets. NOVA follows the team’s discoveries as they examine the building’s unique structure and other ingenious design strategies that have insured the dome’s survival. The engineers build a massive eight-ton model of the building’s core structure, place it on a motorized shake table and hit it with a series of simulated quakes.

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Among the most ancient of animals, rhinoceroses thrived for millions of years before meeting their most deadly enemy: humans. During the past century, the rhinos of...

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