2018 Cadet Research Symposium

Written by Petty Officer 2nd Class Lauren Laughlin

As the school years comes to a close, first class cadets across campus are gearing up for one last presentation during the Coast Guard Academy 2018 Cadet Research Symposium.

The annual symposium, held a few weeks before graduation, gives the first year cadets a rare opportunity to showcase their academic prowess and scholarly work before a diverse audience of peers, faculty, staff, sponsors, and supporters.

Team and individual research, analysis and design efforts culminate at the event in the form of student presentations throughout campus. Most importantly, the Cadet Research Symposium promotes scholarship across all academic disciplines, highlights the Coast Guard Academy as an intellectual resource, and encourages the development of critical thinking and communication skills of all cadets.

“For their capstone problems, the Coast Guard Academy cadets differ from the other service academy students because they are given Coast Guard centric problems,” said Cmdr. Ryan Hamel, an instructor in the ORCA program. “The cadets are solving problems that relate to the Coast Guard and can help the Coast Guard.”

Capstone projects were developed to replicate the real work experiences cadets will face when they enter the Coast Guard after graduation. The capstone project teaches students the skills and concepts needed to succeed as a project manager. Each student is responsible for a particular aspect of the overall project and takes turns in the lead role.

Some of the capstone projects that will be presented this year are:

Building a multipurpose building at ANT Saugerties

First Class Cadets Kurt Caminske, Ryan Burk, Mason Snuggs, and Jacob West

Coast Guard Aids to Navigation Team Saugerties faces multiple hindrances to daily operations. The major issues include daily minor flooding in the parking section of the base, inadequate space allocation for personnel, and an incapable sewage system for the growing base. The Coast Guard Academy Civil Engineering Department assigned this capstone team to find a practical, innovative solution to the problems faced by ANT Saugerties. A site visit was conducted, which included a formal meeting with the Civil Engineering Unit Providence representatives, the Officer in Charge of ANT Saugerties, and the CGA Civil Engineering faculty advisors. Taking into account the requests of the different stakeholders, the capstone team was tasked to complete 35 percent design.

As a result, the team produced a final package to include a building design, building cost analysis, and sewage cost analysis. The building design presents a combined administration and boat maintenance facility that is a steel frame construction with a warren roof system. A cost estimate was completed for the building design, which resulted in an approximate construction cost of $3 million. The proposed sewer system is secondary treatment system after which the effluent will be disposed of into Esopus Creek.

Lastly, a conventional boat slip that is 60-feet in length and 7.27-feet high with a resulting grade of 12.1 percent will be placed to the southwest of the new multipurpose facility. Ultimately, the completion of this design will address the Coast Guard’s pursuit of flood resilient shore facilities and advance the mission readiness of the station.

SeaWatch Vulnerability Assessment

First Class Cadets A.J. Read and Alex Paggi

A vulnerability assessment and penetration test of the Coast Guard’s hardware and software system called Seawatch is the ultimate goal of the project. Seawatch is installed on a variety of cutter platforms to merge information between the navigation, radar, and common operating picture displays. Seawatch is an exceptional system due to its information assurance. Since technology is constantly adapting and the Coast Guard is a high profile cyber target, the need for continuous defence against cyber attacks is crucial. As an example, spoofing vectors can deceive Coast Guard operators causing miscellaneous mishaps, detrimental to Coast Guard operations. The Seawatch vulnerability assessment of sensor data will ultimately bring about possible defences of various sensor spoofing attacks. Once a vulnerability assessment is completed on the Seawatch system, C3CEN will receive defence recommendations that will give guidance on issues in the system and ways to address them for the next upgrade of the Seawatch system. With the defence recommendations, C3CEN will be able to patch and upgrade Seawatch. On Coast Guard vessels, the operators of the Seawatch system should ultimately feel comfortable with the reliability of information presented to them on VEGA, ECDIS, and from the Common Operational Picture. In the future, C3CEN can repeat the vulnerability assessment in order to find more spoofing vectors and their resulting defences.

Remote Helicopter Pad Rehabilitation

First Class Cadets Amy Kimura, Douglas Brown, Andrew Campbell, Nicholas Hubner

Cape Spencer helipad and Eldred Rock helipad, built in the 1960s, serve as the only landing sites to service their respective adjoining lighthouses and electronic/communications equipment in Juneau, Alaska. Eldred Rock, located 58 miles north of Juneau on a 3 acre island in Lynn Channel, consists of a 70-by-70-foot octagon structure. Eldred Rock helipad has organic growth on the decking, cantilevered joists, cracked beams and corrosion to the concrete footings. Cape Spencer, located 58 miles west of Juneau on a three-quarter acre island in the Pacific Ocean, has a 50-by-50-foot square helipad. Cape Spencer helipad’s beams are over deflected and its decking and joists are over shear capacity. Due to their current deteriorated and unsafe conditions, CEU Juneau has requested possible solutions to fix these issues. Through site visits and previous studies, a total redesign of Eldred Rock and a partial renovations of Cape Spencer were formulated using analysis tools like RISA 2D and Excel using the American Wood Council’s National Design Standard and Federal Aviation Administration helipad standards. Through design analyses, cost estimates and decision matrices, a 50-by-50-foot wooden octagon helipad replacement is recommended for Eldred Rock; $232,000. The recommended rehabilitation of Cape Spencer is a renewal of the helipad’s beams, joists and decking with sistered 8-by-14-inch beams, doubled 3-by-12-inch joists, and 4.5-by-12-inch decking; $239,000.

Arctic Alliances and Conflict Potential

First Class Cadets Sarah Chen, Amanda Klawinski and Lindsay Wheeler

The Arctic ARP is studying the ways in which various Arctic states observe, perceive, and interpret Russian actions in the Arctic, and how these interpretations may lead to different preferred pathways in foreign policymaking. The team selected three Arctic states as subjects: Finland, Iceland, and Norway. The cadets studied three types of artifacts: official government strategies and statements of policy; interviews with diplomats at their embassies in DC; and general-audience media. The final category was chosen to reflect public opinion, in contrast to the elite opinions reflected in official and diplomatic sources. The team assessed public opinion through analyzing online news articles, Google search data from Google Trends, and Twitter feeds. They also observed and participated in a live exercise by the Arctic Coast Guard Forum off the coast of Reykjavik, Iceland. The team found similarities in language across government strategies relating to the Arctic, but found that indicators of public opinion varied significantly across the countries they studied.

Finding Saturated, Stable Matches for 3/c Summer Training Assignments

First Class Cadets Dana Rohde, Daria McKenna, Vicky Talens, and John Groen

Each summer the Coast Guard Academy Cadet Training (CT) branch assigns 3/c cadets, or sophomores, to operational Coast Guard units across the country to complete an 11-week summer training program. Finding an optimal solution that avoids any justified envy involves all cadets providing a complete ordinal preference list. The CT branch could then assign each cadet to their highest ranked assignment that is available. By defining a summer training assignment by its characteristics, the number of assignments to be ranked can be reduced by using K-modes clustering and a farthest distance initialization heuristic. A complete ordinal preference list with ties can be obtained by cadets ranking these clusters.

The Coast Guard’s next medium icebreakers

The Nice Breakers: First Class Cadets Ross Garrett, Hannah Eshleman, Bayley Olds and Joe Sagan

The Coast Guard has a need for an icebreaker of moderate capability and size, such that it can transit through the St. Lawrence Seaway, perform Coast Guard missions, as well as provide a platform for scientific research. The Coast Guard Arctic Strategy vows to make a strategic commitment to icebreaking capability for access to the Arctic over the long-term, as well as to improve science and technology capabilities of the Coast Guard on these vessels. In order to provide a solution, The Nice Breaker design group sought to develop a scientific-capable medium icebreaker (SMIB) for the Coast Guard.

Detection and Avoidance of Right Whales along the Northeast Coast of the United States

First Class Cadets Ainsley Fruhwirth and Zoe Bollling

First Class Cadets Ainsley Fruhwirth and Zoe Bollling

To create a smart phone application to prevent fatal collisions between ships and whales using Livestream whale acoustic detection and ranging information for military vessels planning gunnery operations through the use of a Coast Guard geospatial planning program and AIS notifications. Gunnery operations must be completed by military vessels every year and the ranges where these operations take place are sometimes located near seasonal habitats of endangered whales such as the North Atlantic Right Whale. Because gunnery operations must be terminated and rescheduled when a whale is sighted, this application could reduce the risk of collision and save the military millions of dollars if there is knowledge of whale presence in an exercise area before the vessels leave the dock. This application could also reduce the Right Whale fatalities due to ship strikes on a national scale if used by commercial vessel operators planning to transport to U.S. ports.

Disaster Response Aircraft Inventory Cost Analysis

First Class Cadets Lexi Laboy, Maral Toukhanian, Darius Adams, and Matt Grose

First Class Cadets Lexi Laboy, Maral Toukhanian, Darius Adams, and Matt Grose

The purpose of this project is to give the U.S. Coast Guard Aviation Logistics Center a better understanding of what helicopter parts demonstrate a surge during a natural disaster. This project analyzes hurricane data from past Coast Guard natural disaster response to first identify if a correlation between surge operations and an increase in parts ordered exist. Then determine the type and number of parts ordered during surge operations, which quantifies the surge in terms of budget. Finally, determine the most important parts to preemptively stage in a natural disaster area. All of the data analysis methods used Excel.

Design of a multi-purpose support vessel for the Artic

Cube Crusher Co.: First Class Cadets Harry Hoffman, Jordan Fonville, Alberto Enriquez Luna, and Dakota Richter

Cube Crusher Co.: First Class Cadets Harry Hoffman, Jordan Fonville, Alberto Enriquez Luna, and Dakota Richter

In response to increasing vessel traffic and opportunities for exploration in the Northwest Passage, Cube Crusher Co. has designed a concept Arctic Multi-purpose Support Vessel. This concept vessel is intended for commercial operation in order to serve two primary missions acting as a cruise vessel escort and as a science research platform. Compliant with Polar Class 6 requirements of the International Maritime Organization, this concept vessel is 360-feet long and is capable of breaking three feet of ice at three knots. In conjunction with this classification, the vessel will safely operate in the summer and autumn months. The concept vessel was designed to the standards of 46 CFR Subchapter L, for Offshore Supply Vessels. A dual-acting hull design and the use of azimuthing podded propulsors increases vessel maneuverability and capability in a various Arctic conditions, and has proved seaworthy in both transit and rough sea states through MARINTEK’s ShipX software program. Cube Crusher Co.’s design philosophy is focused on increasing the safety of passengers and crews in the Arctic, promoting good stewardship of the environment through science and research, and maximizing the overall functionality of the multi-mission vessel.

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