Three students with the Engineers Without Borders chapter at Missouri University of Science and Technology left to continue the group’s partnership with Nahualate, a largely agricultural community in Guatemala. This will be the chapter’s sixth trip to the country.
Since 2008, S&T students have been working with the village to develop a water distribution project. A 430-foot deep well, drilled through volcanic and alluvium deposits, was recently completed. The new well will eventually connect to an elevated steel tank and 14 miles of PVC pipe to create the potable water network.
S&T students have completed the preliminary design for the elevated steel tank, which will have a capacity of 50 cubic meters. While in Guatemala this month, the students plan to meet with in-country contractors to solicit construction bids, says Dr. Ronaldo Luna, professor of civil, architectural and environmental engineering at Missouri S&T, who will accompany the students this month.
Students traveling to Guatemala include:
Ryan Hoff of St. Paul, a senior in mechanical engineering;
Mark Hogan of Holts Summit, a sophomore in environmental engineering; and
Marisa Zelip of Belleville, Ill., a junior in mechanical engineering.
“The water distribution network has reached final design, and construction drawings are being finalized,” Luna says. Todd Williams of M3 Engineering Group in St. Louis supervised the designs, which were completed by members of S&T’s EWB chapter. Williams, a 1995 civil engineering graduate of Missouri S&T, accompanied members of the S&T chapter during a previous surveying trip in January 2010.
Once completed, the system will serve the village's 2,200 residents, Luna says.
"I have learned countless things from my work with EWB,” says Hoff. “I want to help the community help themselves to give them safe water, something I have grown up taking for granted."