Local schools gear up for Young Scientist expo

Local schools are getting ready to show off their projects at the 51st BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition taking place this January in Dublin’s RDS.

Students from Athlone Community College, Our Lady’s Bower, Moate Community School, St Aloysius College, Marist College, and Athlone Community College all attend the exhibition which will run from January 7-10.

Athlone Community College’s entries include: ‘An Investigation into the correlation between personality and height in teenage boys’ - Why does the taller man get the girl, earn more, run the company, and become president? Does his teenage height and personality development predict this? And ‘An ecological comparison of conventional tillage versus strip-till after one season’ - A field of barley was sown half in the conventional way and half by strip-till. The project compares the soil ecology of each side.

The Bower’s entries include: ‘HPV: Warts and all’ - An investigation of Westmeath teenagers' knowledge and awareness of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV ) and vaccine before and after the delivery of an information module.

‘Coffee-diesel, biofuel from used coffee grounds’ - The main barrier to biodiesel production is the lack of cheap feedstock.Spent coffee grounds contain as much oil as traditional feedstock.They’re abundant, cheap and biofriendly.

‘Alternative ways to cool the liebig condenser’ - The group are investigating alternative ways to cool the Liebig condenser in order to avoid the huge waste of water that currently arises in distillation experiments.

Moate Community School have two entries: ‘Not “mush-room” for turf any more’ - As the demand for turf is increasing and less is available, the group are trying to make a burnable fuel out of spent mushroom compost, and ‘Hoof wall separation disease in Ireland’s Connemara pony’ - An investigation into Hoof Wall Separation Disease in Ireland’s Connemara pony with analysis to determine the key ancestral lines carrying the defective gene.

St Aloysius College have two entries: ‘Can an Android kernel be redesigned to work with a variety of devices?’ An android kernel that would work with a variety of different devices, with little to no modifications, and ‘Can an adapted Newton-Raphson algorithm optimise big data software?’ - This project investigates the use of an adapted Newton-Raphson algorithm to optimise the runtime environment for big data solutions.

Finally the Marist has one entry, ‘Recycling body heat’- Investigates the potential to recycle the heat in our exhaled breath to warm our bodies.

There are over 120 awards to be won during the event including the prestigious BT Young Scientist & Technologist of the Year.

For more information on the exhibition and for details on how to enter, log onto www.btyoungscientist.com or follow the exhibition on Twitter @BTYSTE.

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