Bridge-builders meet The Crusher


Bridge-2What can you build using only Popsicle sticks, wooden toothpicks, white glue and dental floss? If you're an engineering student, you can build a bridge capable of withstanding 1,500 kg of pressure.

On March 3, 130 students representing 14 colleges and universities in North America got together for the 16th annual Bridge-Building Competition.

Their structures were on display in the atrium and the mezzanine all morning, and were judged on their originality and aesthetics. Then they were taken to H-110 to face The Crusher, a device which measured how much pressure they could stand.

Twenty-eight teams took part, including two from Concordia. Vermont Technical College's Solo Mission III came in first. ETS's Pont Lˇvis came in second place with only 2 per cent separating them from Vermont. The University of New Brunswick took third and Ryerson Polytechnic fourth. The teams from University of Calgary came in fifth and sixth.

This year, the University of Calgary set a new record for resisting The Crusher's pressure: Their bridge held a load of 5,030 pounds. However, because their bridge was a heavy one, they slipped to sixth place. The old record was 4,489 pounds, set by University of New Brunswick in 1999.

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