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Teams Collect Hardware at 2016 1/4-Scale Competition

Date: Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Peoria, Illinois—After years of respectable performances, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln brought home its first-ever win from the International 1/4-Scale Tractor Student Design Competition, held June 2-5 in Peoria, Illinois.

Rounding out 2016's top five were familiar names: Kansas State and the University of Kentucky placed second and third, respectively, followed by Modesto Junior College and Université Laval in fourth and fifth. All four have won or finished among the top five in previous competitions.

In addition to taking home the Detra-Wehner traveling trophy, the University of Nebraska received a plaque and $1500. All other top finishers also received plaques, and runners-up received cash awards ranging from $1200 to $500.

Awards were given to the winners of numerous judging categories, as follows:

CAMPBELL SCIENTIFIC AWARD – University of Nebraska

BEST APPEARANCE – University of Missouri


SPORTSMANSHIP – Oklahoma State University

CRAFTSMANSHIP – The Ohio State University

MANUFACTURABILITY – University of Nebraska

SERVICEABILITY – University of Nebraska

TEST & DEVELOPMENT – Kansas State University

SAFETY – Iowa State University

MANEUVERABILITY – Purdue University

ERGONOMICS – The Ohio State University

SOUND LEVEL – Iowa State University

First place – Iowa State University
Second place – Kansas State University
Third place -- University of Illinois

First place -- University of Nebraska
Second place – Kansas State University
Thirs place -- Iowa State University

Winner, First Hook -- Kansas State University
Winner, Second Hook -- Kansas State University
Winner, Third Hook -- University of Kentucky

DURABILITY AWARD – North Dakota State University

MOST IMPROVED – University of Nebraska (moved 22 places from 2015 competition)

Sponsored by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, the competition is unique among student engineering-design contests, providing a realistic 360-degree workplace experience. It is a popular recruiting event for many sponsors, who find among the participants practiced, high-achieving prospects with strong technical, communication, and leadership skills honed by competition experience.

Competing teams are given a 31-hp Briggs & Stratton engine and a set of Titan tires; the tractor is theirs to design and create. Judges evaluate each machine for innovation, manufacturability, serviceability, safety, sound level, and ergonomics. Teams also submit a written design report and must sell their design, in a formal presentation to industry experts playing the role of a corporate management team. Finally, machines are put to the test in three performance events—three tractor pulls, a maneuverability course, and a durability course.

Through involvement in the competition, students gain practical experience in the design of drive train systems, tractor performance, manufacturing processes, analysis of tractive forces, weight transfer and strength of materials. They also sharpen critical “soft” skills--communication, leadership, teamwork—as well as gain experience in fundraising and test and development.

Sponsors of the 2016 competition include: AGCO, Briggs & Stratton, Case IH, Campbell Scientific, Caterpillar, John Deere, New Holland, SolidWorks, RCI Engineering, and Titan. Also, Claas,GSI, Katie McDonald Photography, and Thompson. Other supporting sponsors include Central City Scale, Danfoss, igus, MacDon, and Miller Electric.

For more information, contact Tina Schultz.

The American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) is an international scientific and educational organization dedicated to the advancement of engineering applicable to agricultural, food, and biological systems. Further information on the Society can be obtained by contacting ASABE at (269) 429-0300, emailing, or visiting


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