The Concrete Canoe Club gives civil engineering students a chance to implement classroom theories by designing, constructing and racing a concrete canoe in an annual competition with engineering students from dozens of other schools.
Janus, the club’s 2005 ship, represents a new hydrodynamic design and was made of concrete that balances lightness and strength to an exceptional degree: 3400 psi compressive strength at 76 pcf.
Janus was built of biased, directional fiberglass mesh reinforcement and incorporated an innovative post-tensioned cable system that cut more pounds from the canoe. Two-state construction, utilizing both male and female molds, allowed the club members to produce a finished hull that was as thin as ¼ inch in some areas.
Janus came in ninth out of 21 entries in national competition this past spring in Clemson, S. C., and took first place for technical presentation. This was the best showing by City College engineering students in the three decades since they first entered the competition.
Club members say they are ready to incorporate what they learned from Janus into designing an even better canoe for the 2006 competition.
The club is a subgroup of the student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) at the college. The faculty advisor of the club is Professor Kolluru Subramaniam.