News / USA

International Student Scientists Show Cutting-Edge Inventions

Megan Perkins from Kentucky tested the efficiency of different fuel oxidizers in rockets for the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair
Megan Perkins from Kentucky tested the efficiency of different fuel oxidizers in rockets for the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair

Multimedia

Mike O'Sullivan

More than 1,500 budding scientists from around the world gathered in Los Angeles, California, last week (May 8-13) to compete for $4 million in prizes and scholarships at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.  The high school-age innovators showed off some cutting-edge inventions.

Sixteen-year-old Zhdan Sukhov demonstrates a small robotic rover adapted for use in the fight against terrorism.  The student from the Ural mountain region of Russia says it can be used to help bomb-defusing crews locate explosive devices. “So this model could go under the car and look for some kind of bombs, mines, something like that.  And then the defusing group can do their work," he said.

The students and advisors came from 65 countries to showcase their innovations in environmental science, medicine, chemistry and many other fields.


A student from Ukraine created an instrument that is both a guitar and violin.  

Student Haoyang Fan from China demonstrates a tracking device for skateboards that lets users analyze their skateboarding technique.  He said a small computer on the bottom of the board tracks motion and direction, "indicating which part of the move I did wrong, and how should I correct them.”

Jimmy Wong, director of the Hong Kong New Generation Science Innovation Center, says a team from Hong Kong brought several different inventions. “A device for helping color-blind people to recognize colors, a safety device for working on tools or any mechanical machinery that will cut off the electric supplies as soon as you touch a fan that you have at home.  As soon as you touch the blade, it will cut off the electricity," he said.

Hong Kong student Nick So developed a kit to measure the levels of potentially toxic nitrates and nitrites in homemade baby food. “Some parents may use vegetables that contain high levels of nitrates.  And so the baby food has got a high nitrate level, and when it reaches their stomach, it will be reduced to nitrites and cause the blue baby syndrome," he said.

Many of the Intel student-scientists this year were girls.  Jessica Richeri from California designed a self-driving vehicle that avoids obstacles.

Megan Perkins from the south-central state of Kentucky tested the efficiency of different fuel oxidizers in rockets.  She has tested rockets since the age of eight in the corn field behind her house. "And so in middle school, when I had to do a science fair project, I naturally leaned toward rockets because it's kind of like a family hobby," she said.

Megan says she wants to become an aeronautical engineer.

Fifteen-year-old Tunisian student Meriam Touzi developed a water conservation unit inspired by a household mishap, when her mother wasted water by leaving a tap on. “She left it for a few minutes, and when she came back, the floor was full of water," she said.

Fifteen-year-old Francela Rojas from Costa Rica developed a device to convert sunlight to electricity using mirrors, heat and pressure to power an engine.

She hopes to make this a career, and says her family supports her. "They respect that I want to be a mechanical engineer.  You don't see a lot of girls in mechanical (engineering), but that's what I want to do, and they are totally agreeing with it, and they just support me 100 percent," she said.

Other teens, like Francela, say that science is exciting, and they, too, are planning careers in the field.

You May Like

Video Iran Nuclear Deal Becomes US Campaign Issue

Voters in three crucial battleground states - Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania - overwhelmingly oppose nuclear deal with Iran More

With IS in Coalition Cross-Hairs, al-Qaida's Syria Affiliate Reemerges

Jabhat al-Nusra has rebounded, increasingly casting itself as a critical player in battle for Syria’s future More

Lessons Learned From Katrina, 10 Years Later

FEMA chief Craig Fugate says key changes include better preparation, improved coordination among state, federal assistance agencies More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs