First-Place Win in Bridge Building Competition

Katherine Lang's Bridge and score thumbnail183005
P.J. Gelinas Junior High School ninth grader Katherine Liang earned first place in this year’s Brookhaven National Laboratory Bridge Building Competition. Due to the ongoing pandemic, this year’s contest was held virtually and streamed on Facebook for audiences to watch live.

The annual contest draws submissions from students across Long Island with a passion for mathematics, physics, research and engineering. To participate, students apply principles of physics and engineering as they work to construct a bridge from a 3/32 square cross-section of basswood with a mass no greater than 30 grams. On the day of the competition, the judges test the bridge and apply weight until the structure fails.

For her submission, Katherine constructed a bridge was 18.70 grams and held 38.60 pounds. The bridge received an efficiency score of 936.29.