Department of Energy

From 'Spaghetti Strength' to 'Race to the Future Hydrogen Fuel Cell': Winning Projects at Brookhaven's 2019 Elementary School Science Fair

May 13, 2019

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Editor's note: this article was originally posted on Brookhaven National Laboratory's website.

UPTON, NY — More than 440 science projects from 100 Suffolk County elementary schools were entered the 2019 Elementary School Science Fair. The Fair, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory and coordinated by the Lab’s Office of Educational Programs (OEP), was held at the Laboratory on May 4.  Brookhaven scientists, engineers, and technical staff, as well as teachers from local elementary schools, judged the projects.

In addition to the first-place winners (listed below), selected students received honorable mention for projects that ranged from “Rubber Chicken Olympics” to “Voice Recordable Smoke Detectors.” A list of the winners and students who received honorable mention can be found on the Lab’s Office of Educational Programs website.

The first-place winners, by grade level, are:

The 2019 Brookhaven National Laboratory science fair winners
The 2019 Brookhaven National Laboratory science fair winners.
BNL
  1. Connor Nugent, kindergarten, Miller Avenue Elementary School, Shoreham-Wading River School District, “Spaghetti Strength”
  2. Audrey Leo, first grade, Lincoln Avenue Elementary School, Sayville School District, “Knot Again”
  3. Zachary Lister, second grade, Miller Avenue Elementary School, Shoreham-Wading River School District, “Slippery Sock Science”
  4. Matthew Pokorny, third grade, Norwood Avenue School, Northport/East Northport School District, “Rock and Barrier Waves”
  5. Liam Dwyer, fourth grade, Norwood Avenue School, Northport/East Northport School District, “Rip Rap Paddywhack”
  6. Pranav Vijayababu, fifth grade, Bretton Woods Elementary School, Hauppauge School District, “Race to the Future Hydrogen Fuel Cell”
  7. James Bulger, sixth grade, Robert Moses Middle School, North Babylon School District, “Nano-Remediators: Using Nanotechnology to Remediate Oil Spills” (Not pictured)

Ella Henry, a fifth grader from J.A. Edgar Elementary School in Rocky Point, said she did her project on acid rain because she loves plants and cares about the environment. “My project took me 14 days to do. I didn’t win today, but I had fun and I loved caring for the plants,” she said. “Science is my favorite subject and I hope to be a zookeeper when I grow up.”  Ella’s brother, John, a kindergartner who attends Frank Carasiti Elementary School in Rocky Point, also had a project in the Lab’s science fair. “I used Legos to learn that earthquakes can knock over towers,” he said.

Lucas Renna, a fifth grader from East Moriches Elementary School, was excited that he got to attend the Lab’s science fair. “My project was about creating bioplastic spoons to help reduce waste pollution in our environment. I really care about the animals in the ocean, so I want to find a way to help reduce trash. I hope I can be a veterinarian when I grow up.”

While students and parents were waiting for the award ceremony to start, the Lab held a science expo with hands-on science activities. “There is some ‘down’ time while the projects are being judged and we are waiting for the awards ceremony to start,” said David Manning, director of the Lab’s Stakeholder Relations Office. “We thought this was a good opportunity to share the excitement of some of the science being done here at the Lab and encourage these young students to think about a career in science, technology, engineering, or math. We were happy that many of the students and their families participated in the expo. It was a great day at the Lab.”

 

Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy.  The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time.  For more information, please visit science.energy.gov.

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