For 17 years, Leonardo Da Vinci researched how to produce Il Cavallo, a huge equine statue to be made out of bronze in a single pour. But when he finally had the clay model built and ready to be cast, all the needed bronze was taken to be used for a war against France. The mold and model were destroyed, and the statue was Da Vinci’s “horse that never was.” Despite Da Vinci’s confidence in the design, however, many engineers believed the casting would never have been successful any way. Recent advances in casting simulation technology provided a way to prove Da Vinci right.
The Institute and Museum of the History of Science in Florence, Italy, sought to test DaVinci’s design and worked with XC Engineering (an Italian associate of Flow Science, Santa Fe., N.M.) to conduct a casting simulation for the artwork. The result: Da Vinci’s 24-ft.-high, 70-ton bronze horse would have been successfully cast in a single pour in 165 seconds.
A video about the project can be viewed on the Discovery Channel’s website: http://news.discovery.com/archaeology/leonardo-davinci-cavallo-statue.html.
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