The RenaissanceRe Wall of Wind
RenaissanceRe is committed to investing in and supporting cutting-edge weather risk research like the Wall of Wind so that we may help both our clients and storm-exposed communities to gain a better understanding of their vulnerabilities to storm hazards and, ultimately, to build safer, more resilient communities.
- The RenaissanceRe Wall of Wind (WOW) is a public-private partnership between RenaissanceRe, WeatherPredict Consulting, and the International Hurricane Research Center at Florida International University in Miami.
- The WOW revolutionized wind engineering research by replicating the effects of Category 4 Hurricane winds and rain on full-scale residential structures and building components in a laboratory environment.
- The WOW consists of 6 modular steel rectangular units housing Chevrolet ZZ502 Big Block crate engines. Each engine drives 2 counter-rotating 80 inch propellers creating a cross-sectional wind field 24 feet wide by 16 feet high.
WOW has been featured on TV, in newspapers, magazines and scientific journals: Newsweek: “Building a Hurricane-Proof House”, 10/22/07 Discovery Channel: “Wall of Wind”, 10/10/07 ABC World News Tonight with Charles Gibson, 9/21/07 Wall Street Journal: “From Fans’ Whirlwind, Researchers Reap Data to Brace Homes”, 8/7/07 USA Today: “Man-made Storms to Test Houses”, 8/15/07 New Scientist: “Masters of Disaster”, 9/07 Tech Decisions: “Winds of Change”, 7/07
Florida International University Civil and Environmental Engineering: “RenaissanceRe Wall of Wind Groundbreaking on the Engineering Campus”
Professional Roofing: “The Wall of Wind”
American Association for Wind Engineering, “The Wind Engineer”, October 2007
USA Today, “Man-made storms to test houses”, August 27, 2007
The Wall Street Journal – Real Estate Journal, “Researchers Reap Data to Brace Homes Against Harsh Hurricanes”, August 15, 2007
International Hurricane Research Center, “IHRC News Update”, Winter 2006/Spring 2007
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