GoMRI gives Special Award at the 2013 Intel International Science & Engineering Fair
– June 7, 2013
(From Summer 2013 Newsletter) GoMRI awarded a Special Award at the 2013 Intel International Science & Engineering Fair (ISEF) for best project in oil spill related science (with a preference for projects focusing on the ocean or coasts). The $3000 award was presented to Abdullah Koca and Omer Altun of Konya, Turkey for their project entitled Oceans are More Significant than Petroleum.
Abdullah and Omer worked to find an effective, ecologically pure and cheap way to recover petroleum from water. They tested 10 natural materials such as chicken feathers, goat hair, and pumpkin seed shells. Their results indicated that chicken feathers, which are currently thrown away in the US food industry, were the most efficient material, absorbing 98% of the spilled petroleum. The students also calculated the costs that could be recovered if the petroleum was then extracted from the feathers and continued to be used. The students concluded the economic benefit of removing the petroleum from the waterways was more significant than the potential cost savings of being able to reuse the recovered petroleum.
Every year more than 1,500 student finalists from 65 countries, regions, and territories around the globe earn the right to attend the Intel ISEF by winning an Intel ISEF-affiliated fair at a local, regional, or national level. Finalists in 2013 competed for more than $3 million in total awards; competitors were judged on their creative ability and scientific thought, as well as the thoroughness, skill, and clarity shown in their projects.
This was the GoMRI’s second year participating as a Special Awardee. Special Awards given in specific disciplines encourage study in these specific fields among high achieving high school students around the world and contribute to building the future work force that will be solving problems related to GoMRI-type research. GoMRI congratulates Abdullah and Omer on their excellent work!