"Clemson University (3CT)"

(7th overall, 4th in paper, 6th in presentation, 15th in product, 8th in races)


Canoe Name: The Game Day Experience; Canoe Weight: 147 lb; Canoe Length: 21' 1"


Clemson University represented the Carolinas Conference and made their twenty-first national appearance.

3CT relied on 4 people to make their presentation; 2 men and 2 women. The presenters were dressed business casual. The team used 1 screen; there were 2 animations.

The team based their theme on tailgating. They began their presentation with a team introduction. After giving the rationale behind the selection of their theme, they discussed the keys to having a successful tailgate party and related these attributes to the concrete canoe competition.

The team began their technical presentation by describing their organizational structure and the roles played by their team members. Then, it was off to mix design.

After discussing how they optimized their mix by selecting the proper aggregates, the team elaborated on their hull design. During this process, they specified the changes that they made to improve performance.

After explaining how they did their structural analysis, the team discussed mold and canoe construction. They explained how these tasks was accomplished and mentioned the steps taken to cure their canoe. Then, the team explained how they patched and finished their boat.

Finally, the team mentioned how they constructed a practice canoe and used it to train their team so that they would have a successful "Game Day Experience."

Questions and Comments:

  • You built an enclosure to control the environment but mentioned that you had inconsistent curing. Can you tell us why?
  • In retrospect, what would you do differently during the curing process if you could do it again?
  • Why bother curing at all?
  • Why did you want to eliminate slag to reduce inconsistencies?
  • Why do you think that the dark spots occurred?
  • How did your changes in hull design improve your canoe's hydrodynamic performance?
  • Did you consider canoe transport during your structural analysis?
  • You mentioned that some sections of your form stuck to your hull. How do you plan to avoid this problem in the future?
  • Did you compare your concrete test results to work done by others?
  • Did you do any work to validate your predicted results relative to those actually obtained?
  • Why did you perform a literature survey prior to mix design?
  • Were you concerned when you added glass to your Portland based mix?


Overall the team enunciated well and addressed all of the questions, save the "greening" effect that occurs due to a lack of oxidation during the curing process.  

Team UAH encountered this problem in 2010 (see the next to last photos here). The blue-green color is attributed to a complex reaction of sulfide sulphur in slag cement with other compounds in Portland cement. In most concretes made with slag cement, the surface becomes light gray or white within hours after the concrete surface has been exposed to direct sunlight and air. In fact, slag cement often is used because it enhances the whiteness and brightness of concrete. The interior of the concrete, however, can remain blue-green indefinitely.


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