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Oregon State University Team Wins 2023 PCI Big Beam Competition 

<strong>Oregon State University Team Wins 2023 PCI Big Beam Competition</strong> 

CHICAGO – Oregon State University has won the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institue’s (PCI) 2023 Engineering Design Competition, also known as the Big Beam Competition. The national competition, in its 23rd year, teaches college students important structural engineering skills in an applied learning environment that will benefit them in their future professions. 

Teams of students and a faculty advisor design, build, and test a 20-foot, precast, prestressed concrete beam. Local PCI-certified precast concrete producers mentor and fabricate the beams for the teams. Entries are judged on a variety of criteria, including the beam’s load-resisting performance in tests that simulate real-life conditions structural building and infrastructure components must endure to ensure life safety, as well as the quality of their analysis and reports, and a video overview of their project. 

“PCI Big Beam competition helped students learn different perspectives compared to the knowledge gained from the classroom,” said Tanarat Potisuk, faculty advisor for the winning team. “This included performing design calculations, building the beam, and observing actual behavior of the beam through the test. The results were eyeopening for them, showing that when design assumptions were well thought out and calculations were correctly executed, it could predict the actual behavior of the beam closely.” 

“This competition facilitates a link between engineering calculations and real-world precast concrete fabrication,” added Jared Brewe, PCI’s Vice President, Technical Services, who served as a judge. “It’s exciting to see how the teams approach the problem, adapt to meet limits of their producer partner, and learn 

through the process of design, fabrication, and testing. The creativity in the video submissions also demonstrates the ingenuity of these students and their excitement for the opportunity to visit and work with our producers.” 

The 2023 PCI Big Beam Competition was sponsored by ALP Supply and ASPIRE magazine. 

Overall Results 

First Place: Oregon State University 

Faculty Advisor: Tanarat Potisuk 

Student Team: Sean Freitag, Nicholas Peterson, Kobe Wagner PCI Producer: Knife River Prestress 

Second Place: University of Minnesota Duluth 

Faculty Advisor: Brock Hedegaard 

Student Team: Justin Entinger, Eric Gibson, Kate McCabe, Abby Norman PCI Producer: Molin Concrete Products 

Third Place: Iowa State University 

Faculty Advisor: Hartanto Wibowo 

Student Team: Anisha Karki, Gata Milla, Lucas Reidel, Chandra Shekhar Lakavath PCI Producer: Rinker Materials 

Remaining finishers in alphabetical order. 

University of British Columbia 

Faculty Advisor: Lisa Tobber 

Student Team: Alay Bhagat, Sara Darsi, Jassimrat Deol, Vishawjit Singh Gill, Navsift Kaur, Samantha Krieg, Mahya Moghadasi, Kiana Youssefian Sahzabi, Grant Shishido 

PCI Producer: Rapid-Span Precast, a Limited Partnership 

University of Illinois at Chicago 

Faculty Advisor: Didem Ozevin 

Student Team: Said Elferachi, Haider Himairi, Caitlin Koziel, Raguez Taha PCI Producer: County Prestress 

Lehigh University 

Faculty Advisor: Clay Naito 

Student Team: Tj Briscoe, Urinrin Otite, Constantine Patmandis PCI Producer: High Concrete Group LLC 

University of Massachusetts Amherst 

Faculty Advisor: Sergio Brena 

Student Team: Andrew Lochner, Lukas Souza, Omid Monshi Toussi PCI Producer: Unistress Corporation 

University of Massachusetts, Team 2 

Fsculty Advisor: Sergio Brena 

Student Team: Joshua Govina, Thien-Thanh Nguyen, Lucia Pan, Cameron Ritchie PCI Producer: Unistress Corporatiion 

New Jersey Institute of Technology 

Faculty Advisor: Mohamed Mahgoub 

Student Team: Armin Saadegh-Vaziri, Alexander Savekin PCI Producer: Jersey Precast 

Northern Arizona University 

Faculty Advisor: Robin Tuchscherer 

Student Team: Anthony Eschen, Hunter McCormick, Joshua Sewell, Farrah Young PCI Producer: Tpac 

Keith Kaufman Award for Best Report 

Judges considers the overall presentation of the report when deciding on a best report winner. In addition to verifying the report contains all the requested sections and required signatures, judges look for clear presentation of data, professional look and formatting, and an overall well-written report. 

Oregon State University 

Faculty Advisor: Tanarat Potisuk 

Student Team: Sean Freitag, Nicholas Peterson, Kobe Wagner PCI Producer: Knife River Prestress 

Best Video 

Requirements include a video taken of the precast concrete beam being tested. Teams are encouraged to be as creative as they wish when preparing the final video. Videos with a storyline related to the big beam competition are clear standouts and the judging committee may elect an entry to receive a best video award. 

Lehigh University 

Faculty Advisor: Clay Naito, PhD, PE 

Student Team: Tj Briscoe, Urinrin Otite, Constantine Patmanidis PCI Producer: High Concrete Group LLC 

To see the student videos, please visit PCI’s Big Beam Channel on YouTube. 

About PCI 

Founded in 1954, The Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (PCI) is a technical institute for the precast concrete structures and systems industry. PCI develops maintains, and disseminates the Body of Knowledge for the design, fabrication, and construction of precast concrete structures and systems. PCI develops consensus base standards, industry handbooks, quality assurance programs, certification, research and development projects, design manuals, continuing education and periodical publications. PCI members include precast concrete producers, erectors, suppliers, professional engineers and architects, educators, students, and industry consultants who complement the wide range of knowledge of precast concrete. For additional information, visit pci.org/howprecastbuilds.