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2010 - "Super Charger"


Overall length of boat: 6.1 m (20.0 ft)  

Net weight of canoe: 88.5 kg (195 lb)

Concretes: 1129 kg/m3 (70.5 lb/ft3); 1094 kg/m3 (68.3 lb/ft3)

Reinforcement: Two Layers of Spatially Separated Un-impregnated

Placement: 6th at Nationals

Regional Conference: Auburn University, Auburn, AL

National Competition: Cal Poly - SLO, San Luis Obispo, CA

     P: Jorge Cacciatore
     VPs: Jennifer Bowers; Stephen Phillips
     S: Charlsie Smith
     T: Chris Shaw
Jorge Cacciatore
     SBC: Vinny Liebner

SEC Conference Coordinators: Ester Sala; Stephen Icolano

Community Service Coordinator: Kimberly Wander

Faculty Advisors:
     Dr. Houssam Toutanji; Dr. John Gilbert

Contact Members:
     Mr. Jackie Whitaker
     Dr. Teng K. Ooi

US Navy Campus Liaison Officer:
     Dr. Teng K. Ooi

Concrete Canoe Project Manager:
    Jorge Cacciatore

Concrete Canoe Project Engineer:
   Matthew Pinkston

Concrete Canoe Team Captains:
   Jorge Cacciatore; Stephen Phillips

    Sarah Yeldell
    Todd Watts
    Jackie Whitaker

Professional Training and Development:
    Mr. John Bentley

Media Relations:
     Mr. Ray Garner

Technical Editor:
   Dr. Tom Lavin

Our competition theme:

2010 Team UAH Design Paper

In 1500, when the Spaniards brought the first horses into the Huntsville area, a group of Cherokee youths helped a massive Andalusian stallion and three mares escape into the mountains.  This was a great blow to the stallion's owner, Don Philippe e Garcia de Velasquez, and the expedition's leader, Ponce de Leon.

The horses prospered and the story of the great charger which escaped from the Spaniards was told and retold throughout the region. The animals prospered and, following sightings of wild "blue" horses grazing on our pastoral campus in the "white" early morning mist, "Charger Blue" became our school"s mascot.

Since blue and white were selected as our school's colors, we decided to incorporate them and the magical spirits of these elusive beasts into SUPER CHARGER, so that our team would be so fast and so smart that no one would be able to catch us as we paddled to victory!

We flew our school colors (blue and white) in California and based our theme on the true story of how our school's mascot, "Charger Blue," was selected.

The Team UAH "Chargers" pose with mascot "Charger Blue" in California.  
hoto by Ms. Sara Tollefson: (716) 622-9763; email

Southeast Conference Concrete Canoe Champions!

UAH celebrates Southeast Conference Concrete Canoe Championship.

Chapter President, Jorge Cacciatore (left and center), and Vice-President, Stephen Phillips (right), served as team co-captains.  They helped  put Team UAH in the hunt for the national title.

This was our ticket to nationals.  Thanks to everyone for getting us there.

We really appreciated our media coverage!

Hats off to Robert Reeves (Channel 19 WHNT) who interviewed Team UAH.  See here.

TV Coverage - 4 Segments 1 2 3 4

Channel 19 (WHNT.com) newscaster Robert Reeves (left) and photojournalist Gregg Stone (right) interview 
Ms. Alex Stavaru (Graphics Designer) and Jorge Cacciatore (Team UAH President).

The Weekly Databyte 03/16/10
The Weekly Databyte 05/26/10
The Weekly Databyte 06/26/10

"We may not have had fancy buses, nice jackets, hats, or shirts...or as many Chapter members as some of our competitors...but we fought hard at every turn and gave it all we had... even when the obstacles in our path seemed impossible to overcome.  Facing these adversities together brought us closer as a team."

Team UAH pulled together to win the Southeast Conference Concrete Canoe title.

"We dedicated this Championship to the family and friends of the faculty members that lost their lives, and the faculty and staff who were wounded on February 12th, 2010. 
You will never be forgotten."   Jorge Cacciatore, ASCE Chapter President

Team UAH and "SUPER CHARGER" place first at the Southeast Conference.

California Here We Come!

We saved money on T-shirts (left and right) but invested heavily in "SUPER CHARGER" (center)... best product at the Southeast Regional.

Our outer graphic (left) depicts our 24 past entries while the inner graphic (right) tells the true story of how our school's mascot was selected.  We placed ribbons in the horseshoe graphics located in the bow and stern of our canoe to help Team UAH "CHARGE ON" toward victory!

ASCE Chapter member Alex Stavaru and her graphics team worked 40 hours straight to get the job done in time for the regional competition.,, and they used our school colors (blue and white) on this, our 25th anniversary.

We built our dynamically tuned cementitious structure in 28 days!

Four members of our paddling team face off against the University of Central Florida at the turn buoy during the co-ed sprint (center).  High winds and rough water on Georgia"s West Point Lake tested the teams' paddling prowess to the limit. 

We had fun at the awards banquet (left) especially when we learned that we had won the Southeast Conference Concrete Canoe Competition (right).

Team UAH women's team members (left to right in the photo to the left):
Nikki Gibson, Jennifer Crabb, and Katie Morell.

Jennifer was unable to make it to nationals because of a job offer.  But Joanna Fischer joined the crew to help us paddle to victory.  The ladies were on the UAH lake five days per week... and competed on Lopez Lake in CA.

Team UAH made the 2010 Princeton Review's Guide to 286 Green Colleges.

According to the Princeton Review: "Team UAH is renowned for its award-winning participation in the National Concrete Canoe Competition, sponsored annually by the American Society of Civil Engineers. The team has five national titles to its credit, and placed ninth at nationals in 2009 for its construction of "ITZ Civilized" which focused on sustainability in design and construction."   Read more here.

We placed 6th overall at Nationals!

Team UAH (right and left) and our pit crew (center) give it their all at the 2010 National Concrete Canoe Competition in California.

Women's (left) and men's (right) endurance races.  Photos courtesy of Concrete Canoe Pictures.

Team UAH negotiates the turn buoy in the co-ed sprint at the2010 National Concrete Canoe Competition.  Photo by Phil Klein courtesy of ASCE.

Women's (left) and men's (right) sprint races.  Photos courtesy of Concrete Canoe Pictures.

Team UAH was looking good at the Awards banquet in San Louis Obispo.

Team profiling:

We realize that people are our most valuable resource... and consider ourselves fortunate to have been able to work with  John Bentley, professional training and development consultant from Power2Transform (P2T), to help overcome some of the difficulties that we encounter.

See the P2T Newsletter

Alumni Notes:

Thanks Todd, Sarah, Jackie, David, Kirk, Teng, ,... 

Your continued dedication as UAH alumni is greatly appreciated!

It took us nine years to do it but we finally designed mixes that are better for concrete canoeing than the one that allowed us to win in 2001.  Both mixes are slightly heavier but more flexible so they lower the natural frequencies of the hull.  Since the latter are closer to the rate at which we paddle, we force the boat into a swimming motion that lowers our deceleration between strokes.  Unfortunately, the water was so rough at nationals that the boat contorted to such a degree that the boundary layer separated and out technology actually worked against us.

On a more somber note, we dedicated our effort to the faculty and staff that were shot on campus during the initial construction of our canoe. The victims and their families have our deepest and most heartfelt sympathy... and we'll forever remember those killed and wounded as some of our school's most dedicated "Superchargers."

We were surprised when our canoe turned from brilliant white to bluish green until we discovered that this was due to "Greening."  In the end, we integrated the strange patches into our design. 

We integrated the strange patches into our design.

Our sponsors joined forces to send Team UAH to California.

 Turner Universal, M&D Mechanical, Fuqua and Associates, Goss Electric, and Reed Contracting team played with our other sponsors to close the financial gap required to send Team UAH to the 2010 National Concrete Canoe Competition in San Luis Obispo, California.  Each company donated $2k.  We thank our four local TV stations and the Huntsville Times for coming out to the big show,  We really appreciate all of your support!   

UAH Contacts:

Our media contact is Ray Garner.  Ray is a member of University Relations at UAH.  His telephone number is (256) 824-6397.

Our faculty advisors are Dr. Houssam Toutanji [(256) 824-6370] and Dr. John Gilbert [(256) 824-6029].

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