This week in STEM History: The Cyclone opens in Coney Island

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The Cyclone

Coney Island: Brooklyn, New York

On June 26, 1927, one of the oldest wooden (still working) roller coasters in America opend for the first time in New York City's premier amusement park, Coney Island. Like other older coasters, the Cyclone is made with wooden planks and held together by trusses, which are diagonally supporting beams forming a triangular shape. The ride itself is thrilling, holding the rider in their seat with gravitational and centripetal forces. After all these years it is still the second steepest roller coaster in the world and has 2,640 feet of track and 12 drops.

The coaster was declared a New York City landmark on July 12, 1988, and was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on June 26, 1991

For more information about the famous Cyclone visit Luna Park, Coney Island


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Who designs roller coasters?

Civil, Mechanical, Electrical and Structural Engineers! They are called Roller-coaster designers

Today, Engineers use software design programs to test and retest their designs for structural integrity. Mechanical engineers design the loops and drops that roller-coasters are famous for. They can also design everything from the coaches to the nuts and bolts of a new ride. Structural engineers oversee the structural aspects of design. Civil engineers conceive, design, build, supervise, operate, construct, and maintain the infrastructure to ensure our safety.