By Meghan Rosen
Web edition : Wednesday, August 29th, 2012
2011 Broadcom MASTERS finalist, Andrew Blonsky of Chapel Hill, N.C., shows off a model for his science project: an investigation into algae’s ability to remove carbon dioxide from car exhaust.Broadcom MASTERS, Robin Weiner Photography
Forget the baking-soda volcano. With research ranging from the power of natural mosquito repellent to the adaptability of reef-building corals, a new crop of young science fair students are leaving old-school projects in the dust.In September, 30 of these middle schoolers will head to Washington, D.C., to take part in the final stage of the Broadcom Math, Applied Science, Technology and Engineering for Rising Stars, or MASTERS, program. This is the second year of the national science competition, which is sponsored by the Broadcom Foundation.
Announced on August 29, this year’s finalists include one 12-year-old from Massachusetts who figured out how to use the ocean’s waves to generate electricity. Another from California pitted an intelligent game-playing computer against human doctors and professors. But the competition doesn’t just consider the creativity and scientific merit of a student’s project; it also judges each finalist’s ability to solve problems, communicate and work in teams.
While in Washington, the 30 sixth-, seventh- and eighth-grade finalists will compete in a series of project showcases, individual interviews, and intellectually grueling team trials designed to test each student’s math and science mettle.
Read more @: http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/343351/title/Young_scientists_make_the_cut