LSA’s Uncommon campus video took us from the Burton Tower to a spot on Campus that was a bit less recognizable. We found ourselves at the Marine Hydrodynamics Laboratory. The 360 foot trough is tucked away in the ground floor of West Hall right off the engineering spot, this is a place most students past daily.

The Marine Hydrodynamics Lab It is the only remaining piece of the College of Engineering left on Central Campus. The labs are used to demonstrate the navel architecture experiments, such as calm water resistance and testing propellers.


To test the ship models, they are connected to a computer-controlled carriage. The carriage is capable of traveling at speeds up to 22ft/s. There is also a wave maker that can create a wide variety of wave conditions for testing. We decided to take the carriage for a test run:

Fun fact: The West Engineering Building opened in 1904 and held the model basin, then 300-ft long. In 1908 the basin’s structure was extended by 60 feet, and the building itself was also lengthened to enclose the basin.

Know of any other cool places on campus? Tweet us @umich using the hashtag #uncommoncampus and we’ll make sure to visit! And a special thanks to LSA for creating the original video!