Issued 2/16/99


Contact: Diane Greenberg (516) 344-2347 or Mona S. Rowe (516) 344-5056





Testing of model bridges designed and built by Suffolk County high school students for the 1999 BNL Model Bridge Contest. Media representatives are invited to attend. Although students, parents and teachers will be present, the event is closed to the general public because ofspace limitations.


Saturday, February 27, from 9 a.m. to approximately noon.


Berkner Hall, Brookhaven National Laboratory. The Lab is located on William Floyd Parkway (County Road 46), one-and-a-half miles north of Exit 68 of the Long Island Expressway.


Almost 300 high school students from 21 schools in Suffolk County have entered the 1999 Model Bridge Contest. (Attached is a list of schools that have entered students in the contest.) The students designed and constructed model bridges according to certain size and weight specifications, with the goal being to build the lightest bridge that supports the most weight. Materials were restricted to basswood and glue.

The bridges will be tested by Brookhaven engineers, using a machine called a stress tester. The bridges are approximately 12 inches long, two inches wide and several inches high, yet they weigh less than two ounces. Some are very intricate and attractive.

The first- and second-prize winners will be eligible to enter the 1999 International Bridge Building Contest, which will be held in Chicago, Illinois, in May.

The contrast between the delicate basswood bridges and the machinery used to test them provides excellent visuals. Students, parents and teachers will be present for the testing, and the media are invited to attend. The event is not open to the general public.