Canadian high school student wins top prize at Intel International Science Fair

Intel-International-Science-Engineering-Fair-Winner-Vancouver-Wang-fuel-cell-EDIWeekly

A Canadian high school student from Vancouver has taken the top prize, worth $75,000, at the 2016 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Phoenix, Arizona. Han Jie (Austin) Wang, a grade twelve student at David Thompson Secondary School, won the Gordon E. Moore Award for Best in Fair. It is the second year in a row in which a Canadian, from the same school, with the same last name, has taken the top prize. Last year, Raymond Wang out-paced 1,700 fair participants to win the big prize.

This year’s winner, Austin Wang, who is 18, devised a way to improve the efficiency of microbial fuel cells, which convert organic waste into electricity. Combining microbiology and chemical engineering, Wang identified genes in the E. coli bacteria that improve the efficiency and economic viability of this type of fuel cell.

Austin-Wang-Intel-Science-Fair-microbial-fuel-cell-EDIWeekly
Austin Wang

Last year’s winner, Raymond Wang, won the Moore prize for engineering an air inlet system for airplane cabins that improves air quality and inhibits disease transmission. Raymond Wang said at the time of his win that he approached science with the idea of addressing “real world” issues. As an example, he said his first invention was inspired by the sound of falling rain on his roof. Wang made a piezoelectric roof that could harness the impact energy of the raindrops and the kinetic energy of the wind to generate electricity for the house. He has also invented a self-cleaning outdoor garbage bin.

The Intel science fair attracts entrants, “the world’s most promising student scientists, inventors and engineers,” from schools in 77 countries. Millions of high school students submit projects through local affiliated science fairs, and the top 1,700 are selected to compete in the big fair. Six other Canadian students won prizes this year in the categories of cellular and molecular biology, Earth and environmental sciences, plant sciences, environmental engineering, and systems software. In total, the value of the fourteen awards won by Canadians this year was US$106,700.

The marketing manager for Intel Canada, Nancy Demerling, said in a statement about the Canadian winners that the back-to-back wins of the top prize “showcase how competitive Canadians can be on a global scale.”

Did you miss this?

Other Popular Stories

  • Uber and Hyundai Announce Partnership to Make Flying Electric Taxis
  • Cars new and used dominate Canada's exports
  • Exports, innovation key to small business success: CIBC
  • Strength to build on, but Canada still lags in industrial R&D
  • Ontario's manufacturing output "robust" in May: RBC
  • Brighter outlook for Canada's economy in 2016: RBC
  • Tesla phenomenon will change both how cars are imagined and sold
  • Little agreement on whether it works, but governments press ahead with infrastructure spending
  • SAFFir is an autonomous robot firefighter being tested by the Navy for dangerous situations. Unlike other firefighting robots, SAFFir is both autonomous, and stands on two legs, with two hands to grasp fire hoses.
    Robots save lives: robot fire-fighters take on explosive situations. SAFFiR shows how they can be ultimately be autonomous.
  • Modest business growth forecast as manufacturing slows in June
  • A tech-smart, airless, customizable tire, with replenishing tread unveiled by Michelin
  • Top seven pieces of exciting new tech that will soon become mainstream
  • Conditional approval for Northern Gateway pipeline
  • Low oil prices not a serious threat to Canada's economy: RBC
  • Japan setting records for new solar power installations
  • Aerospace industry fuelled by emerging markets: BMO
  • Demand for industrial real estate soaring in Canada: report
  • Manufacturing sales rose sharply in some sectors in January: Statistics Canada
  • Targeting 45% of all Electricity from Solar in the United States by 2050
  • International Trade Commission Hands Down Verdict in Bombardier versus Boeing Dispute
Scroll to Top