Kent Bingham, founder of Oasis System, began work with Walt Disney Inc. (now WED) in 1977 as Epcot in Florida was taking shape. He also went on to projects such as the Queen Mary in Long Beach, Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park, and Circus World in Florida. He had started his life as an “Entertainment Engineer”, but did not yet recognize that as a unique professional discipline. As Chief Structural Engineer at WED, Kent had the need to work on everything at EPCOT. He did the schematic level of structural design on all architectural systems, all buildings, and all pavilions in EPCOT. He also had to work on everything outside of these architectural system, a project defined as ”Area Development” which included bridges, fences, light poles, paving systems, ponds, sea walls, retaining walls, etc. Kent also did some work on utility systems such as the distribution lines from the central energy plant to all of the buildings.
The Pavilions had Show and Ride Systems in them with tracks and boat channels. He had to provide support for all of these systems as well as specialty finishes such as faux rockwork, sets and props. He did no stress analysis for the mechanical show and ride systems, but he had a close interface with all of those mechanical engineers and Show and Ride designers.
In 1985 Kent joined the firm of John A. Martin in LA and became their “Director of Operations”. In 1986 some of his Disney friends asked him to help them on the 2010 Space Odyssey at Universal Studios in Los Angeles. That was his start with stress analysis and general engineering QC review of one-of-a-kind Show and Ride systems.
Following that 2010 show (which went very well), Kent was asked to do the same type of work on the King Kong Show. That was a lot more complex with Crash and Burn helicopters, hovering helicopters, collapsing bridges, a King Kong animated gorilla, and lots of sets and props. The team was praised for the success of that show, and given the green light to do the “Earthquake Show”. This was the end-all show for show action equipment and special effects. No one at Disney or Universal had every done such an ambitious or complicated show before.