UMD’s steel bridge team advances to national competition
A chorus of power tools chatter and echo in the DECC arena as Justin Entinger and the UMD steel bridge team work to assemble their 20-foot bridge. The timed event was part of the American Institute of Steel Construction’s regional competition held in Duluth.
“This event is showing engineers that there’s more than just designing something,” Entinger said. “It’s about being able to design it and fabricate it.”
Teams were tasked with constructing a bridge that can withstand a load of 2,500 pounds and span a distance of 20 feet. They were also judged on aesthetics and the speed of construction.
UMD passed all load requirements and assembled their bridge in just under 20 minutes, setting a new team record, and advancing to the national competition held in San Diego in June.
Their truss style bridge is composed of about 90 pieces of artfully painted components, resulting in a strikingly sturdy result.
“Learning about civil engineering in Duluth is really cool,” Entinger said, looking out the window at the Aerial Lift Bridge, Duluth’s iconic steel bridge, and the gateway to the region’s shipping industry.