ASCE Concrete Canoe Competition

Joe Cook

Joe Cook,
Junior, Civil Engineering

Athens, OH 8 April 2013 – It floats!!! That was the big news for the members of the Ohio University student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers. This past weekend our student organization, which I am currently president of, competed in the Ohio Valley Student Conference in events such as concrete canoe, steel bridge, environmental engineering, surveying, and technical paper competitions. We competed against other ASCE student chapters in the Ohio Valley region such as Ohio State University, Akron, University of Cincinnati, University of Kentucky, Youngstown State University, Pitt, Carnegie Mellon, Western Kentucky University, and Cleveland State University, the conference host this year.

Our biggest accomplishment this weekend was launching a canoe and bringing it home in one piece. This is the fourth consecutive year our organization has built a concrete canoe, and this is the first time the canoe didn’t fail structurally in the water or during transport. I was personally captain of the environmental engineering team, we developed a bench scale column filter to remove phosphorous, the major component in fertilizer and a major contributor to toxic algal blooms, from simulated storm water. Although the results aren’t currently available, our independent tests yielded promising results.

Concrete Canoe

The coolest thing about my team’s design was the implementation of iron pigment we derived from acid mine drainage near campus. Using this source of iron we are effectively treating two water quality issues with one product. The following link is to a story about our concrete canoe team; note that our canoe was affectionately dubbed the Yellow Submarine. If you take a look at the pictures it becomes apparent why.

Read the Russ College news release for more details on the competition.

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