The Bridge Designer is a free educational software package designed to provide middle-school and high-school students with a realistic introduction to engineering through the design of a steel highway bridge.
The software guides the user through the processes of:. With a single button click, the user can determine if the design is successful i.
Creating a successful design is simple, but creating an optimal design is quite challenging. Thus, the software offers an engineering design experience that is achievable by kids as young as fourth grade but still suitable for technologically savvy high school and college students. Gene also set up the Bridge Designer as an open source project on SourceForge.
You can download the Bridge Designer from the Bridge Designer website. I just wanted to convey to you what a great, instructive, and user-friendly program this is for middle school students.
When Would You Use It?
All fifty sixth graders were able to design a working bridge on their own within twenty minutes of individual work time. This session motivated many to download the program at home and continue working and competing in their own time. The instant feedback that the contest gives about individual standings is fantastic. The bridge-building has caught on in many other grade levels throughout the school. Students are choosing to stay in during their recess time to design, and the math department has integrated the program into their classes as well.
Your bridge building software is so superior to any of the commercial programs that it has become the standard program throughout the district.
Thanks for sharing it. This is a super way to get these young kids introduced to construction, basic bridge design, technology, and research.
I really appreciate it! When I take my class to the computer room, they are always working on the contest, even to the extent of forgoing their 5 minute break between classes when we have two physics classes in a row.
They really like the program.
I thank you for the tremendous piece of software you have created and the wonderful application it provides for my students and their learning. Thanks for your time and excellent tool you have provided for educators. My students have really learned a lot about engineering and some even are considering it for a career choice.
It has proven to be a tremendous resource for me, not only in teaching engineering concepts, but also in creating enthusiasm in the students. The software has been a fabulous success in our middle school program and I plan on introducing the software to our high schoolers.
Keep in mind, all this with children who in some cases have significant learning disabilities.
First let me say what a great thing this is! You all have provided us a real-life opportunity to use some of the structural design lessons in a realistic manner.
I have some students really pumped-up to do this. My students have been using the … bridge program for the past 3 or 4 years. They love it.
MAKING FLAWLESS BRIDGES! // Bridge Constructor
Whenever I do a Technology Education workshop I always pass out information on the bridge program to other teachers. I appreciate your contest because it helps [students] see the forces that are acting on the particular members of the bridge.
The students say the software is user friendly and they have a lot of fun designing the bridges. Thank you for offering this opportunity to them. This contest and software is a great way to introduce students to the idea of engineering trade-offs.
Bridge Construction Planning
My students are not only enjoying the challenge of producing a bridge that will hold up the weight but are being very creative about doing it. Any free time in class is spent on the building of bridges. I have had a student tell me he stayed up till a. For updates, events, and discussion:.
[PDF] Bridge Engineering (Bridge Construction) Books Collection Free Download
Stephen J. Ressler, P.
Overview The Bridge Designer is a free educational software package designed to provide middle-school and high-school students with a realistic introduction to engineering through the design of a steel highway bridge. The software guides the user through the processes of: graphically creating a structural model; defining the material and mechanical properties of each member in the structure; running a simulated load test of the structure to determine if it is strong enough to carry a standard, code-specified highway loading; displaying a 3-D animation of the load test, with members color-coded to indicate tension blue and compression red ; graphically modifying the design to strengthen any inadequately designed members; and minimizing the cost of the design, by adjusting member properties or modifying the geometry of the structure.
Testimonials I just wanted to convey to you what a great, instructive, and user-friendly program this is for middle school students. Facebook Page For updates, events, and discussion:. Search this Site Search for:.