Saw this today on the travel channel while just relaxing and got hooked. They showed the South Padre Island Texas water park Schlitterbahn Beach Waterpark (36 acres) and the water rides as well as behind the scenes. They also showed AutoCAD being used by the the company NBGS (Jeff and Gary Henry). The cable television program was 1 hour long and really was interesting not like a advertisement it was all about the rides, the design and stats.
The Schlitterbahn Boogie Bahn 2 sheet wave was amazing and said to be the largest manmade surf wave in the US and holds a competition of surfers each year. The sheet wave is a custom designed structure and uses technology from Autodesk Inventor using firm FlowRider by Wave Loch.There was also the Master Blaster which you ride in a inflatable raft vehicle down a large structure at almost 20 mph. They use an ingenious water jet system to propel you even uphill up to 50 feet.This is all tempting me to take a vacation down to South Padre as I just scheduled a sabbatical for this August and will be looking for fun distractions. I also saw that you don't have to stand in lines as most water feature lines are kept in the water to keep you cool. That sure would make for an awesome day but you may end up with pruned fingers and a sunburn.
You might be surprised to know many of the rides around the world such as water rides, roller coasters, ferris wheels, bungee towers, or other amusement and theme park ride and structures may have most likely been designed using Autodesk products such as AutoCAD, 3ds Max, Autodesk Inventor, Maya, etc. I have spoken with many designers over the past years including many designers that design coasters and waterparks around the world and use Autodesk products like AutoCAD. One of the worlds most famous and innovative coaster design firms (and featured an another TV channel I love to watch the Discovery Channel) is located here in Utah and designed one of the first roller coaster cork screw featuring rides. Although most old school coaster designers used string or wire to first model the features then a pencil, many today use software. There is also Water Technology of Beaver Dam Wisconsin (hi Joel)designing water parks with Autodesk products including the new Autodesk Impression. David Harrington a former Autodesk Users Group International "AUGI" Top DAUG and AUGI President worked on the design for the Disney MGM Studios Aerosmith themed coaster Rock 'n Roller Coaster in AutoCAD, see this in the Autodesk Freewheel Examples.
Check out the coaster and water park design related links
- Waterparks -Wikipedia
- Discovery Channel Build a Coaster
- The Ultimate Roller Coaster Contest--Physical Science/Mathematics
- Roller coasters - Wikipedia
- Dream Job: Roller Coaster Designer
This is not a marketing or sales advertisement, I am just a design junkie at heart, and appreciate and am passionate about design.
Many times I find myself missing being a full time mechanical designer like I was 10 years ago. There is nothing like designing a product and seeing it from conception to completion and functioning. I am so envious of Autodesk customers and the products they design and build every day in the world.
I may not always be an Autodesk employee, but I will always be a designer. - Shaan
Got a cool project or design that might spark a young person to choose a science or engineering career, please email me at [email protected]. It is important to excite young people on how cool design and engineering careers are.