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Concrete boats afloat!
Trine civils compete at Notre Dame
Around 25 Reiners Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering students from Trine University attended the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) annual Great Lakes Conference at the University of Notre Dame in South Bend April 2-5.
Several faculty members also attended, including department chair Dr. Tim Tyler, Dr. M.A. Karim, and Trine’s ASCE chapter faculty advisers, professor TJ Murphy and Dr. William Barry. Conference highlights included the annual concrete canoe competition on a blustery day at St. Mary’s lake on the Notre Dame campus, and the AISC steel bridge competition, held indoors at the Stepan Center on Notre Dame’s campus.
Trine’s canoe team fared well, with the ladies team, including juniors Megan Rowe and Kristen Julian, both Angola High School alumni, and Kelly Rogers placing second out of more than 10 teams.
In the excitement of passing the “swamp test,” in which the canoe is submerged and must float back to the surface within five minutes, the canoe team hastily pulled the canoe out of the water, loading it in the opposite direction for which it was designed, initiating cracks.
Due to the cracks, the canoe took on water during the race, taking the men’s team out of the competition. They were pulled out of the frigid water by a cold water rescue crew that on site for the competition. The canoe design team was led by seniors Thomas McNicholas and Kevin Hintz.
The Trine steel bridge team, led by senior Steve Mitchell and including seniors Jordan Maxson, Steve Rushfeldt, Travis Tuttle, and Jordan Eldridge and juniors Zack Panak and Cole Reese, put Trine in the competition for the first time in more than 10 years. The bridge, designed and fabricated with generous help from both Hill Steel (Flint, Mich.) and Nucor (St. Joe, Ind.), and gloriously painted in Trine blue and white, passed all safety tests, performing particularly well in the lateral deflection test. It also carried several hundred pounds before passing the allowable vertical deflection limit.
Trine professors called the Great Lakes Conference enjoyable and a great learning experience for the students.