The University of Evansville’s Concrete Canoe team won the Innovation Award and earned 10th place overall in the 2013 American Society of Civil Engineers National Concrete Canoe Competition — cracking the top 10 for only the second time in team history. The 26th annual competition took place June 20-22 at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
UE won the competition’s Innovation Award for the strategic use of a dimpled texture to reduce drag on their canoe, “Palus” (an astronomical term to describe a surface feature on the moon). The canoe, which measures 19.9 feet long and weighs 216 pounds, was inspired by an episode of “MythBusters” that investigated whether a car with a dimpled texture like a golf ball could obtain better gas mileage. The team also finished sixth in the technical paper category, their highest finish in history.
The UE Concrete Canoe team was led by Jamie Johnson (project manager), James Gabe, Chris Kuester, and Heather Passey. Members included Jaclyn Altstadt, Christina Bernauer, Abby Browder, George Carroll, Ryan Hayes, Luc Heidenreich, Hieronymus Mitchell, Hannah Okray, and Shannon Osiecki. Mark Valenzuela, associate professor of civil engineering, is the team's faculty advisor.
UE's Concrete Canoe team was also featured in the New York Times' coverage of the competition, available online.