Student Awards

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  • Investigations
    1st

    Jade Moxey

    Sapphire Coast Anglican College, NSW

    Grazing sheep on Deadly fireweed: A "BaaaaD" situation?

    When working on her family farm in Bega, Jade Moxey often sees sheep feeding on fireweed. It made her wonder whether this toxic weed is moving through the food chain onto the dinner plate. Fireweed contains Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids (PAs) which can be toxic. Jade studied whether PAs entered the food chain as a result of sheep feeding on the toxic weed. She conducted blood testing, liver analysis and liver histopathology to determine whether residual PAs were present in the tissue of sheep.

    View Jade's video interview
  • Investigations
    2nd

    Amy Zhou

    Queensland Academy of Health Science, QLD

    Self-derived peptides: inhibition of bacterial growth without resistance

    After a friend’s father died from a bacterial infection that failed to respond to antibiotics, Amy Zhou decided to put her interest in molecular chemistry to work by finding a way to fight antibiotic resistance. The World Health Organisation warns that antibiotic resistance is a major global health threat to the effective prevention and treatment of an ever-increasing range of infections caused by bacteria. Amy found that when the protein structure of Fructose-6-phosphate aminotransferase (GFAT) is disrupted, it is more difficult for bacteria to mutate and there is a lower likelihood of the bacteria developing resistance.

    View Amy's video interview
  • Investigations
    3rd

    Rebekah Kang

    PLC Sydney, NSW

    Slick and clean: An investigation into the use of magnetite in oil spill clean-up

    A quick clean-up of oil spills can reduce the devastating consequences of these environmental disasters on marine environments. Rebekah Kang developed a method for separating oil from water by using magnets, pantyhose and feathers. She found that magnetite granules sprinkled on oil were able to separate oil from water when swept by a device containing a magnet and organic materials such as feathers. She hopes her research could be the basis for a more effective natural clean up method of oil spills in the future.

    View Rebekah's video interview
  • Engineering
    1st

    Justin Mitchell

    St Kevin's College, VIC

    Synth-etic: the world's first 'hood-wind' instrument

    Aside from a love of maths and coding, Justin is passionate about music. He sings with the Australian Boys Choir and plays piano and oboe. So it was perhaps only natural for Justin to use his engineering talents to develop a music device. Justin built and programmed a device stored in the pockets of a hoodie that allows the user to compose and play electronic music. The music can only be heard by the wearer. There are eight keys, four per hand, with the eight notes of one octave scale. His device allows the user to change the pitch of the scale. It has 127 instrumental settings.

    View Justin's video interview
  • Engineering
    2nd

    Declan Predavec

    Mosman High School, NSW

    Hi-Viz bike system

    With cars and bikes increasingly sharing our roads, safety is a major issue for cyclists. Declan, along with his older brother Callum, developed a laser that marks a one metres safety distance behind a bike to help motorists avoid getting too close to cyclists. To create the project they used 3D printing to produce the various devices involved in the laser system such as a warning screen on the back of bicycles that warns motorists if they are driving too close to a cyclist.

    View Declan's video interview
  • Engineering
    2nd

    Callum Predavec

    Mosman High School, NSW

    Hi-Viz bike system

    With cars and bikes increasingly sharing our roads, safety is a major issue for cyclists. Callum, along with his younger brother Declan, developed a laser that marks a one metre safety distance behind a bike to help motorists avoid getting too close to cyclists. To create the project they used 3D printing to produce the various devices involved in their laser system such as a warning screen on the back of bicycles that warn motorists if they are driving too close to a cyclist.

    View Callum's video interview
  • Engineering
    3rd

    Dylan Sanusi-Goh

    John Monash Science School, VIC

    ThermaQuad

    In a world where drones may soon deliver parcels, Dylan has developed a sophisticated drone at a relatively affordable price. His ThermaQuad drone can carry payloads and supports thermal imaging applications. Better yet, his drone costs a fraction of the price of store-bought drones. The Year 12 student’s interests in micro-electronics and aeronautics, led to the development of a drone suitable for practical, real-world applications.

    View Dylan's video interview
  • Innovator to Market

    Amber Kraczkowska

    Pembroke School, SA

    Chocolate garden

    Everyone loves chocolate. But something a lot of people don’t know is that 40 million tonnes of cocoa shells amass every year from chocolate and cocoa production. To determine the most effective composting system for cocoa shells, Amber put cocoa shell feedstock into three composting systems (aerated static pile, static pile and in-vessel) and recorded the temperature moisture levels and microbial activity of the feedstock over 47 days. She then mixed the compost produced from each system to grow lettuce seeds and compared the quality and effectiveness of the different types of compost in producing lettuce.

    View Amber's video interview