ERDC-Supported Research Commences with U.S. Military Academy

Published Aug. 24, 2012

Public Affairs Office

CHAMPAIGN, Ill., VICKSBURG, Miss. -- ERDC laboratories will soon expand research projects through

the use of the established ERDC-West Point research partnership.  Both ERDC’s Construction Engineering Laboratory (CERL) and Geotechnical and Structures Laboratory (GSL) will host cadet research.

In support of the CERL-conducted project “Lightweight Systems for Improving Building Envelope Efficiency of Standard Semi-Permanent Theater Structures,” cadets will investigate the redesign of the B-Hut using structural insulated panels (SIPs).  This project will involve cadets and faculty from five academic programs.

Cadets and faculty from the civil and mechanical engineering departments will design the “SIP-Hut,” estimate heating and cooling demand, size environmental control units, locate an appropriate test location on the West Point campus and build both a SIP-Hut and standard B-Hut for testing.

Cadets from systems engineering will consider applications of the SIP-Hut to disaster relief scenarios, optimization analysis of SIP-Hut designs and a “SIP-Hut factory in a box” application, which could contribute to economic development in a host country.

Additionally, participation plans are being developed for cadets and faculty from electrical engineering, computer science and human factors engineering.

The project will take place over two years and will expose a wide spectrum of cadets to the ERDC mission, as well as deliver a high-quality research project.

Cadets Michael Creekmore and Chalermpat Pariya-ekkasut, under the supervision of GSL’s Dr. Paul Mlakar, will continue work they began this summer at the laboratory and expand their technical report, “Resistance Testing of U Picket Alternatives for Triple Strand Concertina.”

And working on a separate, but related project, 11 cadets with ERDC Engineer Fellow Lt. Col. Steven Hart will be involved in a semester-long project to formulate an infrastructure development model to complement the infrastructure component, assessment and protection/resilience models previously formulated at West Point.

These four models are essential tools to help planners and staff “understand, visualize, and describe” the infrastructure variable of the Joint Operating Environment.  This work, together with the supporting research on the other models, will be prepared as an ERDC publication titled “Infrastructure and the Operational Art.”