Undergraduate Research & Mentoring Program

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Sled dog racing -- Alaska -- Iditarod National Historic Trail, Iditarod (Race)


This project revolves around building methanol cookers for dog mushers in the Iditarod and for the Denali Park Ranger Kennel in Denali National Park, Alaska. Traditional cookers are bulky, slow to burn, and use up a lot of fuel. Our goal has been to revolutionize the way mushing cookers look and perform. Our cookers are built to pack well in the sleds, heat up to 3 gallons of snowmelt, perform in arctic climates, use methanol (specifically HEET) for fuel, and be lightweight. A traditional cooker would use 3 to 4 bottles or more of HEET (36-48+oz.) and take at least 1 hour to heat up 3 gallons of water to the temperature needed to warm up frozen dog food. Our design takes 30 minutes and uses 2 to 3 bottles of HEET (24-36 oz). Additionally, it is square, making it easier to pack in a sled. The picture below shows the final product of the cooker that we sent to the musher Lisbet Norris for use in the 2016 Iditarod.


The project abstract is located below in Additional Files

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aimee.pdf (3326 kB)
Project Abstract