Pupils have been sharing their excitement at participating in this year’s BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition in the RDS in Dublin.
The annual exhibition is in its 60th year and from Wednesday, 550 projects from 219 schools will be on display. The projects fall into five exhibition categories – Technology; Biological and Ecological Sciences; Social and Behavioural Sciences; Chemical, Physical and Mathematical Sciences, and Health and Well-being.
“I think what we’re seeing a lot is that projects and students are looking at their own futures and how they can help their own futures so sustainability, artificial intelligence and everything in science, technology, engineering and maths and in between,” Mari Cahalane, Head of BT Young Scientist said.
“The standard is always so high. You never know who is going to win which is really great and it’s always a big surprise when we come to the awards ceremony later in the week.”
Luise May Luxardi from Loreto High School Beaufort in Dublin says she is “absolutely ecstatic” to be taking part in the showcase. She was inspired by rising global temperatures for her project.
“I researched virus and disease-bearing mosquitoes and their living conditions to see at what point they could become an issue in our country due to rising temperatures,” she explained.
“I investigated the impact of future temperatures on Ireland and I researched preventative measures that other countries have been taking to see if we can apply them here if necessary.”
For Rosheen Sharma from Rockford Manor Secondary School in Dublin, sustainability was a focus as she sought to investigate whether UV light could be used to degrade compostable polylactic acid (PLA) plastics.
“What I’ve seen is, UV light, specifically UVC light, can degrade PLA plastic faster and in a cheaper way than how it is now. If you take the information I’ve got from this, in the future there is a potential to develop a whole new way of recyling PLA.”
Rosheen added that she is “so excited and cannot wait for tomorrow” when the exhibition opens.
Vedh Kannan from Sutton Park School in Dublin focused on health for his project.
“My project explores the chemical reactions in the body that support the proliferation of cancer cells and looking into designing drugs or inhibitors that can stop these reactions from happening.”
He says he hopes his research could “lead to saving lives or at least contributing to more knowledge about cancer and treatments.”
The BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition will be opened tomorrow by President Michael D. Higgins. It is open to the public from Thursday to Saturday.