Burj Khalifa

The Burj Khalifa is a super skyscraper which stands half a mile tall in the middle of Dubai's desert (in the United Arab Emirates). The Burj – which means tower in Arabic – is an amazing 828m (2,716ft) high, which is the same as nine Statues of Liberty stacked on top of each other.

The Burj Khalifa is nearly 200m taller than the Tokyo Skytree, the world's second tallest building
The Burj Khalifa is nearly 200m taller than the Tokyo Skytree, the world's second tallest building
  • Updated: 16 March, 2015

It took hundreds of skilled engineers and technicians six years to build. The exact height of the building was kept secret until it opened in 2010.

Why is it important?

It’s the tallest building on earth!

And by a long way as well. It’s 250m taller than the CN Tower in Toronto, Canada, which previously held the title of tallest free-standing structure in the world. In fact, it took just 1,325 days from the start of excavation work for the Burj Khalifa to break the CN Tower’s record.

Inside its 163 floors are offices, apartments, a hotel, restaurants and an observation deck. You can even take a swim in a pool on the 76th floor.

How was it built?

The building's Y shape is based on the shape of a desert flower. The way this pattern has been used to form the tower’s spiral shape helps air to flow around the building. This also means that high wind speeds aren't as dangerous for the structure.

Anything else of interest?

Dubai is very hot so air conditioning a giant building is even more difficult. Its cooling system, which is the same as running 10,000 tons of melting ice around the building, creates 15 million gallons of condensation.

This condensation is stored under the building and is reused to water the gardens in the nearby parks.

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