The 2019 Paper Plane Challenge is back!

Celebrate National Science Week with the perfect STEM challenge combining the forces of flight with design and engineering. The 2019 State Finals will be held at the University of Sydney on Saturday 31st August. If you can’t make it to Sydney, enter our Regional High Flyers competition.

There are medals and cash awards for the distance winners in all age categories. So hurry and get your school qualifying challenge organised soon. All details on the website

ISEF 2019 – NSW Students shine with 4 Grand Awards

NSW students shone once again at the International Science & Engineering Fair 2019 with four Grand Prizes!

Eliza Martin – 4th Place in Biomedical & Health Science;

Callum Predavec – 4th Place in Mathematics and an Honorary Mention Special Award from NASA;

Emma Serisier – 3rd Place in Animal Science; and

Macinley Butson – 2nd Place in Translational Medicine and Special Award from the China Association for Science & Technology.

Also Lucy Lake (BHP Team) – 2nd Place in Engineering Mechanics and a Special Award from the Patent and Trademark Office Society. #STEM#NSW#AUS@stansw

ISEF 2019 – Day 1

The team was lucky to spend a wonderful day exploring the amazing Grand Canyon. It gave the finalists a chance to bond and develop amazing team spirit that would continue to grow through the rest of our time in ISEF.

Broadcom MASTERS International 2019 Delegate Dean Chapman – To Grow or not to Grow, that is the Question

(Sponsored by Broadcom, part of the Young Scientist team)
Dean investigated whether he could find the most efficient method of growing bond oats which his father grows for cattle feed. Using nine 44-gallon drums cut in half, Dean planted 114 oat seeds in each of the 18 half drums which had three different types of soil and then two duplicates of different types of fertiliser and a control. He found that Nitrophoska fertiliser added to sandy loam soil had the highest dry matter yield over a 14-week period.

ISEF 2019 Team Profile Angelina Arora – Green to Clean: Using Algae to remediate Oil Spills

Angelina conducted a novel investigation into strategies to remediate oil spills using ferromagnetic nanoparticles and algae. Angelina successfully magnetised algae that was then able to be used to degrade oil in a simulated spill. This could then be removed using a neodymium magnet. Trialling different amounts and strains of algae, Angelina established that the Scenedesmus obliquus strain of algae was the most effective in degrading the oil, and the most effective amount of algae was a volume 1.5 times that of the oil.

ISEF 2019 Team Profile Callum Predavec – Planetary Transfer Calculator

Google Maps for space! Callum designed an application to calculate the path a spacecraft would take to move between planets using a transfer orbit or for travel to other star systems under power. He noted that, while government space agencies have dedicated systems for these calculations, his software offered this opportunity to everyone, with an interactive and user-friendly graphical interface. Callum will be the first Young Scientist entrant in the Mathematics category at ISEF.

ISEF 2019 Team Profile Eliza Martin – Don’t Cry over Undigested Milk

Eliza examined the potential use of probiotics and synbiotics for the long- term treatment of lactose intolerance by analysing their effectiveness in breaking down lactose in milk samples into glucose and galactose. She measured the concentration of glucose as well changes in pH before and after the addition of probiotics or synbiotics as an indicator of their success in breaking down lactose. The results suggested that probiotics are effective in removing lactose from milk and can do so faster than synbiotic formulations.

ISEF 2019 Team Profile Emma Serisier – Chickens as Bio-recyclers of Household Organic Waste

Most Australian households put food waste into the garbage system, ending up as landfill. If Australians had backyard chickens, this waste could become a valuable source, and thus a part of the food supply chain. Emma aimed to determine how much food waste a chicken can process in both contained and foraging environments and what other benefits flow from this. The chickens produced nutrient-rich manures that can replace synthetic fertiliser and can condition the soil.