The bridges must follow specifications explained in the rule book. The rules of the competition are changed annually to further enhance the quality of the competition and to prevent the submission of an already existing bridge.
The competition is sponsored by the American Institute of Steel Construction and cosponsored by the American Society of Civil Engineers, the American Iron and Steel Institute, the National Steel Bridge Alliance, Nucor Corporation, and The James F. Lincoln Arc Welding Foundation.
The steel bridge competition, in its embryonic form, began as a miniature bridge design competition using balsa wood to see which competitor's bridge is the best. Robert E. Shaw, who managed college relations for the American Institute of Steel Construction initiated the steel bridge competition in the spring of 1987 and was honored by the AISC in 2000 for his achievement. The first teams to compete were Lawrence Technological University(who hosted the competition), Wayne State University, and Michigan State University who won the first few competitions. Soon after, other universities from different regions of the United States began local steel bridge competitions and on 1992, Fromy Rosenberg, who was the new Director of AISC College Relations, began the first ever National Student Steel Bridge Competition.
|1992||Michigan State University||Michigan State University|
|1993||Southern Polytechnic State University||University of Alaska Fairbanks|
|1994||San Diego State University||Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute|
|1995||University of Florida||North Dakota State University|
|1996||SUNY Buffalo||University of Alaska, Anchorage|
|1997||California State Polytechnic University, Pomona||University of Florida|
|1998||Colorado State University||University of Southwestern Louisiana|
|1999||University of Alaska, Anchorage||University of Nevada, Reno|
|2000||Texas A&M University||California State University, Chico|
|2001||Clemson University||Clemson University|
|2002||University of Wisconsin, Madison||North Dakota State University|
|2003||San Diego State University||University of Michigan|
|2004||Colorado School of Mines||North Dakota State University|
|2005||University of Central Florida||University of California, Davis|
|2006||University of Utah||North Dakota State University|
|2007||California State University, Northridge||North Dakota State University|
|2008||University of Florida||University of California, Berkeley|
For a full description of the 2008 rules and regulations, including the scoring go to: Steel Bridge 2008 Rules
The different categories in the competition that will be judged are:
The overall winner has the lowest sum from the construction economy and structural efficiency categories.
Getting to the National Competition - Teams from different regions in this nation competes locally then whoever advances will meet other finalist from around the nation.