I can stand on an empty cola can. It doesn't collapse
. I weigh 200 lbs. The can weighs, what? (someone with a scale weigh the can). 1 oz? I don't know, but please respond. If it's 1 oz, that's a 3,200 advantage. Is this bringing things home for those of you out there who're still in the brick and morter phase?
That's the advantage, the limits with which we're working, here, in this day and age. They just don't compare to the old days.
While vacationing in Hawaii, I once hefted an 8 ft board built using wood. Only someone who was less than 5 ft could ride it because it was so dense (didn't displace much of it's weight in water). I next hefted a same-displace fiberglass, foam core board. Less than half the weight, and now we're upwards of a near 200-pound rider. The third board was a combination of pre-stressed carbon fiber, foam, spruce (of all things), and kevlar. It weighed in at half the fiberglass board. The kevlar portions were laid in with polyester resin, while the carbon with epoxy resin.
25% the weight, and the same displacement. In just 45 years.
Then, the grand finale - a surfboard that was designed by some leading aeronautical engineers. If you could buy it on the market it would have cost more than $100 grand. But it weighed in at less than 30% of the previous board.
That's a 12-fold increase in weight reduction vs cargo-carrying capacity in just 45 years.
Folks, there are some very smart people out there who're doing bang-up jobs on distributing loads while minimizing the supporting densities required to do so under varying conditions.
I honestly wouldn't be surprised if a modern-day engineered skyscraper like the Empire States Building weighed less than 25% of the original but was 30% stronger.
If it weren't, the newest skyscrapers on the market would never be possible.
Nor would acceleration couches built using 17 tons of old-technology design vs 100 lbs of new-technology design.