Fifteen Delaware City Schools students have been invited to present at the District Science and Engineering Fair at The Ohio State University Marion campus on March 23.
In order to be invited, students had to earn a Superior rating during the Delaware City Schools Science and Engineering Fair on Feb. 21.
Students who earned Superior ratings are Elizabeth Childers, a junior; Caylee Combs, a sophomore; Walt Conte, a seventh-grader; Amber Cromlish, a freshman; Ethan Hazelton, a junior; Katie Hejmanowski, a freshman; Molly Hornberger, a freshman; Teagan Knutson, a freshman; Evan Maus, a seventh-grader; Brynn McGrail, a sophomore; Rena Ouyang, a sophomore; Amelia Stranges, an eighth-grader; Megan Wallace, an eighth-grader; Elizabeth White, a junior; and Hallie Wright, a sophomore.
The students worked on their projects for months and studied a variety of topics ranging from bio-luminescent micro-organisms to thermal generators or self-regulating fans.
The sophomore duo of McGrail and Combs studied duckweed’s absorption of Nitrogen and how much runoff duckweed can take. McGrail said their project continued off a similar experiment they did on duckweed last year, which took them to the state competition. They earned second place in the Life Sciences category.
“I was relieved (we made it to districts,)” McGrail said. “If we didn’t make it to districts, we would be sad.”
Combs said they aren’t really nervous to present their research at the competition, because they’ve done it so many times already.
“You go through what you’re saying and your presentation a lot of times,” Combs said.
“It got a lot easier as we went,” McGrail added. “We’re a lot more confident in our project this year than we were last year. We had a lot of problems and got stressed out and wanted to quit, but now it’s nice to see how we got through all the issues and made something really nice of it.”
Seventh-grade student Walt Conte said he created a thermo-electric generator after spending time at his grandparent’s home over the summer and experiencing frequent power outages.
“I was trying to think of a way I could produce electricity conveniently in a situation like that,” Conte said. “… So I built a generator using what are essential portable refrigerator parts so they take heat from one side of the plate and transfer it to the other, which produces a small voltage. With this, I tested how much electricity I could produce and how long I could safely sustain a voltage of five volts.”
Conte said he enjoys working with electricity, because it requires a lot of work and discipline. He earned second place in the Physical Sciences & Engineering category at the Delaware Count Fair.
“Last year, I made an electric generator that used pee … my parents weren’t thrilled about that,” Conte laughed. “I had to do something less crazy (this year).”
Conte said he was nervous at first but has done so many science fairs, including a trip to the state competition, and he’s excited for the district competition.
Junior student Ethan Hazelton took home first place in the Physical Sciences and Engineering division for his work on a self-regulating fan that turns itself off if the room becomes too cold.
Hazelton said he got the idea because he likes to sleep with a fan on but hates waking up to a cold room.
“I did a lot of research,” Hazelton said, adding that he learned to build the fan and how to program the controls. “I learned from about 30 different sources. It was helpful for me to branch out.”
Hazelton added he went to the district competition when he was a freshman, and he is glad he made it again this year.
“It’s just a fun experience,” Hazelton said. “There are a lot of different scholarships available. I just love science.”
Other students that presented their projects at the Delaware City Schools Fair were ninth-graders Taylor Brown, Bailey Christiansen, Danny Gabel, Jamie Hake, Ryne Higgins, Lucas McKeen, Evelyn Mignanou, Claire Oakes, Madison Salyers, Megan Smart, Sam Tedeschi, Kenzie Votaw and Juli Williams.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.