Steel Bridge Team Comes Home With Two 1st-Place Awards

The Steel Bridge Team went up against other top teams in the ASCE’s Mid-Continent Conference last week, one of five S&T teams to attend design events on the same weekend.
Steel Bridge 09 #2.jpg
The Miners earned 1st place in the Aesthetics category, meaning they had the best looking bridge at the event, and also brought home the trophy for best Display, the way they configured their components for inspection. Setting up properly is crucial to team success in the assembly phase, the mad dash to convert two crates of parts into a viable structure. Teams have a limited time in which they must assemble the bridge in a safe and effective manner. Should they drop a tool or commit an unsafe act they are assigned a time penalty which counts against them in the final scoring.
Steel Bridge 09 #5.jpgOnce the bridge is assembled and weighed it is loaded with 2,500 lbs of steel to see if it does what a bridge is supposed to do, support a lot of weight. Rolla’s bridge passed lateral deflection without issues, but fell just 75 lbs shy of the load requirement before the bridge exceeded the allowable vertical deflection, and the team dropped out of the running. This means the team won’t be returning to the nationals again this year, but the upside is that they’ll save on travel money and have a good nest egg for next year’s event.