High School Students Honored for Research

Science News, January 24, 1987 | Go to article overview

High School Students Honored for Research


High school students honored for research

From making submarines operatequietly in the depths of the seas to hunting for a gravitational lens in the expanse of space, the winners of the 46th Annual Science Talent Search are exploring the frontiers of science and engineering. The winning 40 projects, chosen from 1,295 entries of high school seniors, include studies in astronomy, biomedicine, botany, chemistry, mathematics, psychology, physics and zoology.

One student deciphered ancient Mayahieroglyphics, another unraveled the structure of genetic material that may be involved in the initiation of cancer and a third determined the structuree of an industrially important polymer at low temperatures. Engineering and computer projects included a camera that takes aerial photographs from a rocket, a six-legged robot that finds the shortest route through a maze and a computer algorithm that quickly generates the numbers [pi] and e to many digits.

In one project investigating how theIncas moved stone blocks that weighed as much as 220,000 pounds, one student argues against "dry draggin," the current theory, in favor of the use of a clayleaf mixture as a lubricant. In a study entitled "anti-agonistic pheromones," another student showed that chemicals in the abdominal glands of harvest ants label individual ants as residents or aliens of each ant colony.

The 25 boys and 15 girls named aswinners are invited to Washington, D.C., to attend a five-day, all-expenses-paid session of the Science Talent Institute, beginning Feb. 26. Through a series of interviews they will compete for $140,000 in Westinghouse science scholarships and awards. The competition, conducted by Science Service, Inc., and sponsored by Westinghouse Electric Corp. and the Westinghouse Educational Foundation, is designed to "discover and develop scientific and engineering ability among high school seniors." All 40 projects will be on public display Feb. 28 and March 1 at the National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C.

This year's winners, aged 15 to 18, are:

CALIFORNIA: Jessica Lynn Jacobson,Miramonte H. …

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