"University of Akron (Zips)"

(11th overall, 8th in paper, 16th in presentation, 7th in product, 10th in races)


Canoe Name: Cassin; Canoe Weight: 214 lb; Canoe Length: 19'


The University of Akron represented the Ohio Valley Conference and made their fifth national appearance.

Akron relied on 2 men to make their presentation. The presenters were dressed in formal attire. The team used 1 screen; there were 2 animations.

The team based their theme on the USS Cassin, a Mahan-class destroyer in the United States Navy used before and during World War II. They began their presentation with a team introduction followed by a description of their school and team makeup.

The team elaborated on their theme and described how their design was sustainable. They described their organization structure and mentioned that they came in under budget.

The team described their hull design and the process by which they performed their structural analysis. Then it was on to mix design.

The team described the unique route that they followed to achieve their design goals and to optimize the mix design process. Then, they explained how they compared their test results to those found in prior years. 

The team proceeded to discuss mold and canoe construction. They described how they recycled an old mold to train the new team prior to canoe placement.

After outlining the finishing process and describing their cost savings, the team brought their presentation to conclusion.

Questions and Comments:

  • Can you elaborate on the anomalies seen in your stress-strain curve?
  • What type of fly ash did you use?
  • You used four different binders. What do you think of the standard practice of using very few binders?
  • Why did you choose to reduce the deflection in your canoe?
  • How would a lower modulus mix affect this characteristic?
  • Can you expand on your statements regarding bi-axial and tri-axial reinforcement?
  • What did you do in your task labeled pre-construction?
  • How do you feel about your excessive safety factor?
  • Would I be happy if I had such a safety factor, say in a bridge?
  • Would you be happy with a safety factor of 1.0.
  • Did you achieve your design goal(s)?


The presentation was very comprehensive and the team didn't hesitate while answering the questions. However, a simple "Yes" response to the final question seemed to put the judges on tilt .


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