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but they have influenced to a very considerable extent the attitude of the older, more conservative institutions toward the education of young people. Further, they have firmly established themselves as the people's colleges, and to them, more than to any other state supported institution of learning, do the people turn for assistance in their problems of life and industry.
The establishment of engineering experiment stations, or systematized engineering experimentation work, is in full accord with the educational policies of the Land Grant Colleges. It contemplates a service to the people of the states of which they are greatly in need; one which cannot be adequately and economically afforded them through other channels, and one which falls entirely within the province of such institutions.
Such a service is only incidentally of direct value to particular individuals, its scope being broader and covering the entire community composing its constituency. Its aim is to sow those seeds from which shall spring industrial progress, the harvest being a igher standard of living.
Land Grant Colleges or divisions of engineering will find engineering experimentation and public service work a legitimate and profitable activity, for the following reasons:
First. By this means can the institution most naturally and economically increase its efficiency, and approach that standard of service to the state which should be the goal of all such colleges. It is safe to assume that most shops and laboratories, used for institutional purposes, are not operated to their utmost daily and yearly capacity. These facilities represent a large financial investment by the states, and inefficient usage, although possibly warranted from the standpoint of full service for purely educational purposes, cannot be justified from a business standpoint.
In these institutions are specialists, highly trained along technical lines. While the conditions of employment in general are confined to matters of instructional ability, still there remains that consideration of vital importance to community progress, the question of whether a man shall live entirely unto himself and his chosen line of endeavor, or whether for his own good and that of his fellows he will contribute his share of public service, commensurate with his abilities so to do.
In most instances the instructors are overtaxed with their regular work. In order, therefore, to make full use of the available equipment, it then becomes necessary to make some adjustments; either to supply additional instructional assistance so as to relieve each of the men to the extent that he may devote some time to research, experimentation and public service, or to supply a separate force for this work. In either case the small additional expense ordinarily necessary to bring this about would be small as compared with the results obtained in increased efficiency of operation and enhanced value to the state.
Second. The institution, by reason of its peculiar qualifications, and by further reason of the policies followed by most state governments, is automatically committed to such a program. All organizations state supported are “of the people, by the people, and for the people.” The equipment furnished for their work is that necessary to perform those functions for which they are established. The duties of such organizations are always more or less elastic and depend upon the changing conditions and consequent demands of the constituency.
In various ways the different states are performing for their citi.
zens duties which are entirely similar in character to those of the engineering experiment station. Most, if not all, of the Land Grant Colleges have their Agricultural Experiment Stations. The present interest in and appreciation of agricultural education, and the present status of scientific agricultural operations, can in large measure be attributed to the work of these stations. In practically all cases, too, the work is being directed, and in many instances largely manipulated, by the men in the agricultural faculties. There are also the State Board of Health, the State Geological Survey, the State Railway Commission, the Public Utilities Commission and the State Highway Commission, all performing a state-wide service for the people which could not be secured otherwise.
Both direct and indirect value to the people of the state would be derived from assistance rendered the manufacturing, mining, transportation and other industries through organized experimentation and public service. Of still more direct value to the people might be any service afforded county and municipal officials in the prosecution of their work.
By reason, therefore, of the existing field for activity, and of the governmental policies of most of the states, the state supported engin. eering schools have a duty to perform in extending their usefulness beyond the confines of the campus.
Third. The Institution is amply justified in undertaking such work for the value which she will herself derive from its performance. It is first of all progressive, and any educational institution to attain and maintain high rank among sister schools must assert that characteristic vigorously.
This class of work is extremely beneficial to the instructional force. An educator to be successful must grow; there is no neutral plane for him. Either he is progressing or he is gradually but surely slipping back. His value as an educator lies not alone in his knowledge of theory, but in its application to ever changing practice. Through the medium of research, experimentation and expert public service he can keep pace with engineering progress in the field, in ways otherwise impossible.
In addition to his increased technical knowledge, the instructor obtains a broader view of life, and of the fine applications of engin. eering principles to every day things. Even his common place duties become contributary units in a great scheme for the advancement of civilization.
For the students, therefore, the benefit of such work may be even more marked by reason of multiplication. In addition to what technical knowledge they may acquire by observation of or assistance in such work, or by reading the results as published, there is that greater benefit in having as an instructor a man who is bigger and broader than the daily lessons he conducts; a man who has the economic, industrial and social interest of his community at heart, and is extending his usefulness beyond the boundaries of the classroom or the laboratory. Such a man is the model instructor, and will not fail to pass his students on with more than a mere knowledge of the subject taught. Under his direction they are guided into avenues of thought leading to fields of utmost usefulness. Many a graduate will become a better engineer and a better citizen for having known him. In later years the appreciation of high ideals formed under such guidance will bind the alumnus always closer to his Alma Mater.
Institutions anxious to develop this class of work should not remain inactive until adequate funds become available for its separate maintenance. Legislative bodies, and other officials having control
of public funds, view with disfavor all requests for appropriations until convinced that the need for the money sought is real and urgent.
A small beginning, utilizing the available equipment, the part time services of those instructors interested, and such money as can be used from the regular department funds, will with careful planning and wise direction, in time win public approval and support. The various interests of the state will soon realize, through personal experience, the value to them of such a department, and will then willingly lend it their support. When the demands for assistance become so numerous that they cannot be taken care of the institution is provided with its strongest and most effective argument for increased financial support.
Although information gathered through correspondence is always more or less unsatisfactory in its incompleteness, still the writer was able to secure, by means of carefully planned question blanks, a fairly clear idea of progress along these lines at most of the technical institutions in the United States.
Those engaged in engineering experimentation work can be divided into three classes:
1. Those institutions maintaining Engineering Experiment Stations, or definite organizations with similar functions;
University of Arizona.
University of Wisconsin. 2. Those institutions actively engaged in engineering experimentation work, and looking forward to the inauguration of systematic organization within a comparatively short time:
Alabama Polytechnic Institute.
West Virginia University. 3. Those institutions carrying on engineering experimental work, but laying no plans for a distinct organization:
University of Idaho.
University of Michigan.
Institutions maintaining Engineering Experiment Stations or definite
organizations with similar functions.
UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA.
In 1891 the State Legislature of Arizona authorized the establishment at the State University of the Bureau of Mines to carry on assaying for the public. Mining was early recognized as the largest and most valuable industry of the Territory, and both the School of Mines and its Bureau were thereby made leading features from the beginning. Ore testing facilities were provided which have developed into one of the most important aids to the State's industrial de velopment.
In 1903-4, Director Blake, of the School of Mines, in his annual report stated that in one lot of ore, from Globe, Arizona, the very rare mineral, iodobromite, was identified, this being the first occurrence recorded in the United States.
The department has been much further developed since 1912 as the Bureau of Mines and Assaying. It is established to receive and work ores, to make assays and analyses of ores and minerals, and analyses of mineral waters and petroleum. To meet this requirement, a special laboratory has been erected and maintained.
The rates are established by law in accordance with legislative action.
The authorities are looking forward, however, to the establishment of an Engineering Experiment Station covering all branches of engineering work in Arizona.
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA.
In 1910 the University Regents authorized the Department of Civil Engineering to make tests for individuals, for cities, counties or the State, when such inquiries take the form of research or unusual investigations. Such work usually has for its object the solution for an important need in engineering, and the decision of some scientific point. No tests of a merely routine nature, such as can be procured from existing business firms, are made, except as they might be incidental to the solution of some general problem of interest to a particular class. The work is thoroughly organized, and placed on a systematic, businesslike basis.
COLORADO SCHOOL OF MINES.
There has recently been established at Golden a complete testing works for treating ores in carload lots or even larger quantities. This plant was provided to furnish a testing works where any reputable engineer might conduct his own tests on ore at a nominal expense for the plant, and to open the way for systematic research on the minerals and ores in Colorado, with a view to better and more complete methods of treatment.
UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS.
The Engineering Experiment Station of the University of Illinois was established by action of the Board of Trustees, December 8, 1903. Its purposes are the stimulation and elevation of engineering education, and the study of problems of special importance to professional engineers and to the manufacturing, railway, mining and industrial interests of the State and the country.
The practical nature of the investigations and their adaptation to present day needs are assured by means of conferences with committees of the leaders of the State's industrial activities.
The present station force includes the Director, nine College Department Heads, ten Research Fellows, and nine full-time technical men besides the clerical force.
At the present time $40,000 per year is devoted to this work. This amount is not by direct legislative appropriation, but is allowed by the Board of Trustees from the total appropriation for the University.
Up to the present time seventy-five bulletins of value to engineering science have been published. These cover a wide field, dealing with such subjects as tests of high-speed tool steels; the resistance of tubes to collapse; the holding power of railroad spikes; the effect of scale on heat transmission; roof trusses; base and bearing plates in columns and beams; stresses in chain links; extensions of the Dewey decimal system of classification; tests of electric lamps; lighting country homes by private electric plants; street lighting; high steam pressures in locomotive service; rate of formation of carbon monoxide in gas producers; fuel tests; the weathering of coal and spontaneous combustion of coal; thermal conductivity of fireclayheat transmission; freight train resistance; tests of suction gas producer; tests of concrete; reinforced concrete culvert pipe; tests of brick columns and terra cotta block columns; tests of timber beams; tests of cast iron pipes; reinforced concrete beams and columns; tests of built-up columns under load; tests to determine the resistance to flow through locomotive water columns; tests of nickel-steel riveted joints; strength of rolled zinc; inductance of coils; mechanical stresses in transmission lines; starting currents of transformers; superheated steam in locomotive service; a new analysis of the cyl. inder performance of reciprocating engines; effects of cold weather upon train resistance and tonnage rating; coking of coal at low temperatures; characteristics and limitations of the series transformer; electron theory of magnetism; entropy temperature and transmission diagrams for air; tests of reinforced concrete buildings under load; the steam consumption of locomotive engines from indicator diagrams; properties of saturated and superheated ammonia vapor; reinforced concrete wall footings and column footings; strength of I. beams in flexure; coal washing in Illinois; the mortar-making qualities of Illinois sands; tests of bond between concrete and steel; magnetic and other properties of electrolytic iron melted in vacuo; acoustics of auditoriums; the tractive resistance of a 28-ton electric car, thermal properties of steam, etc.
The Illinois Station has confined itself almost entirely to investigational work along highly scientific lines, rather tending to discourage the giving of expert advice and the performance of tests and analyses of a routine nature, except as they are incidental to a larger work. Under ordinary circumstances expert advice involving only a few minutes of time is given gratis. If any considerable amount of time is demanded, the person to whom the oblem is assigned makes his pecuniary arrangements with his client. The Station prefers that persons patronize commercial laboratories equipped especially for the testing of materials. When the Station does commercial testing, a charge is made to cover all expenses involved, together with a reas