Design your bridge digitally with AutoCAD or SketchUp
The digital option encourages teams to submit a digital design to reflect the increasing role virtual/online environments and programs play in the engineering and testing of bridges. By designing their bridge digitally first, students can better plan and design their physical bridges to help them build a stronger bridge and ensure they don’t run out of materials.
As in previous years, schools will still physically construct a bridge from a kit of materials, and the Judging Days will be held as per usual, i.e. the bridges will be judged for efficiency, strength, and innovation.
In addition, and as a way for students to better plan and design their bridges, all schools are encouraged to design their bridges digitally via AutoCAD, SketchUp Make or SketchUp Free. The design they develop using the digital tools can be used to aid their bridge construction.
Teams must submit their digital wireframes to Aurecon via email at email@example.com to be eligible for the Digital Award for the best virtual bridge design. After the bridge wireframes have been submitted, Aurecon engineers will select the three best bridge wireframe designs per location and will virtually test these using bridge analysis programmes to determine which bridge supports the highest load.
The top three digitally designed bridges will be showcased and virtually tested on a projector at the Judging Day events. The digital testing of the projects will be compared and contrasted with the testing of the physical bridge on the rig so students can see which design was stronger. Then, the strongest digitally designed bridge will be awarded the Digital Award.
The top three digitally designed and consequent virtual testing results will be kept confidential until Judging Day. The winner of the Digital Award will be announced at prize giving at the end of the day.
To be eligible for the Digital Award teams must:
- Use one of the digital tools AutoCAD SketchUp Make or SketchUp Free. For further information please see section 4.2 of the Bridge Building Competition Guidelines
- Submit their digital wireframe designs to Aurecon by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
- Submit a physically constructed bridge in accordance with these guidelines
How to access AutoCAD:
- Visit https://www.autodesk.com/education/free-software/autocad
- Insert your details and download the free program to your computer
- AutoCAD is free for all educators and schools to use, and you do not require a license
How to use AutoCAD:
There is also a great library of tutorials available on the AutoCAD website https://academy.autodesk.com/. You can also find more videos on YouTube.
AutoCAD 2018 - Tutorial for Beginners [+General Overview]
AutoCAD 2018 - Create 2D Projects, Filling, and Text [COMPLETE]
How to access SketchUp Make:
- Visit www.sketchup.com/download
- Insert your details and download the free program to your computer or use SketchUp Free online.
- These programs are free for all educators and schools to use, and you do not require a license.
How to use SketchUp:
You can also find more help for using SketchUp by visiting help.sketchup.com/en and searching for more videos on YouTube.