Unless you love reading or water sports, building
Sandcastle is still a “must” for beach vacations. But how do you make your castle as majestic as it is sustainable? Fortunately, there is a scientific formula that can help you.
Building sandcastles remains one of children’s favorite activities at the beach © Ben_Kerckx / Pixabay
It all started in 2004 when a tour operator asked my team to do research. As far as the sedimentologist, that is, a specialist in rocky sediments left by water, wind and glaciers, he began to think about what kind of beaches would be most suitable for building sandcastles. The study was conducted by comparing the sands of the 10 most popular beaches in Britain (at that time). While you can actually build castles on any beach,
Torquay was first in my ranking, with its bright red sand, closely followed by
Great Yarmouth Inn
Tenby fought for third place. We found a range at the bottom of the ranking
But once you’ve chosen the beach, you still need to find the perfect location. This question is more about individual preferences: some prefer to settle not far from the parking lot so that they can go outside when it rains, while others prefer to be near a coffee shop. Still others choose a secluded corner, perhaps better protected from the wind by a natural overhang.
Haven Van Torquay (England) © Averoxus/Wikipedia, CC BY-SA (via The Conversation)
If you want to build a real fort, it is better if your building is standing. And you need hard sand for that! The strength of sand depends on two factors: the properties of the grains it is made of and the water that allows them to bind to each other. The larger the grain angle, the better some of them are. However, the more elements stick to the grains of sand, the softer they become. This is why the microscopic parts of
Shells It is a good choice for building castles. Finally, the finer the grain, the better it retains water. And the question of water is crucial in this case!
Bucket size and shape matter when building a sandcastle © Suju-Foto / Pixabay
If the sand contains too much water, your castle will fall, and if there is too little, it will collapse. So you have to find the right proportions so that your castle is tall and straight. It all depends on the surface tension of water, or “meniscus,” and this phenomenon makes it difficult to move a glass of water placed on a wet, slippery surface.
Our experience has enabled us to prove that for every 8 buckets of dry sand, you need 1 bucket of water to build a perfect sandcastle. Or if you prefer, here’s the magic formula: Water = 0.125 x sand. But if you don’t have any science material, don’t panic! Just find a spot in the sandy strip between the high tide line – easy to spot thanks to a collection of algae and marine debris – and the high tide line. However, keep in mind that this area moves during the day, depending on the tides.
High Water Line © Wikipedia, CC BY-SA (via The Conversation)
The following advice relates to the quality of the tools. In my experience, there is a direct relationship between the age of the hull, the size of the excavator, and the speed at which boredom begins. Adults find small excavators very frustrating and children enjoy using larger excavators but find them difficult to handle. So that the team atmosphere remains harmonious, so plan a large set of tools. The size and shape of the bucket is also important. Simple round buckets are preferable to buckets shaped like castles with hanging towers. With the round bucket, you can make various tricks and details to reach the monument of your dreams, and activate your imagination.
And as you build, keep thinking about the story, not only the fairy tale of the castle and its team of Oud fairy tales, but also the true story of the sands you’re dealing with. Each grain is actually a piece of rock that encapsulates a long history of extinct mountains, ancient rivers, swamps, and decaying seas.
Climate Dinosaurs, Past Events: Many Elements That Tell the Story of Our Planet.
Finally something about the size of the castle. You can, of course, settle for a modest castle, with beautiful towers, ramparts and moats, but the castles that make the difference on the beach and are the most successful are also the most magnificent. Think larger! Your works can decorate pebbles, shells, driftwood, and feathers. And let’s face it: Sand Castle is made to impress. And even if there is a little science, do not forget to enjoy building it behind the perfect castle.
This study was written by Matthew Robert Bennett, Professor of Environmental and Geographical Sciences at Bournemouth University (England).
The original article was translated from English and published on the website of conversation.
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