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Bridges that can spring back undamaged from an earthquake are the objective as engineers look into elastic-like construction materials. Nickel titanium is one such candidate, and has 10 to 30 times the elasticity of steel or other commonly used metals, according to engineering professor M. Saiid Saiidi of the University of Nevada, Reno. In a shake table test, the nickel-titanium columns withstood force from a magnitude 6 quake better than traditional columns.

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