Annual Challenge

Challenge Participants

The 2018 Young Scientist Challenge Finalists and State Merit Winners have been announced! Use the tabs below to check out their big ideas and explore all finalists, winners, mentors and judges!
The Ocean Energy Probe
Hannah Herbst
2015 Winner
Meet Hannah. Hannah's Ocean Energy Probe aims to provide a stable power source and fresh water to developing countries around the globe by using untapped energy from ocean currents. The energy is stored in a generator, and then can be harnessed for many uses, including the desalinization of water.
Eva-Maria Antoni
2015 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Wisconsin
Rishika Bansal
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
New Hampshire
Reid Barnett
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
North Carolina
Charles Bruchal
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Washington
John Burke
2015 State Merit Winner
5th grade
District of Columbia
Pranav Chhaliyil
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Iowa
Jacob Consalvi
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Virginia
The Helping Hand
Peter Finch
2015 Finalist
Meet Peter. Peter believes his invention, The Helping Hand, will prevent many accidents caused by senior citizens falling on the stairs. Meant to maximize the use of arm strength, The Helping Hand reduces the impact on joints like the hands and knees. Although there are electric chairs on the market to help navigate the stairs, Peter believes his invention provides a portable, efficient and less expensive alternative for senior citizens.
Ava Fisher
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Indiana
Collin Frazey
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Arizona
Rohan Freedman
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Maine
Reducing CO2 emissions from cargo ships
Arthur Frigo, III
2015 Finalist
Meet Arthur. In one of many endeavors to learn more about science, Arthur hopes the Young Scientist Challenge will help feed his never-ending curiosity of science. With an interest in preventing some of the global issues faced today, Arthur's invention aims to reduce the CO2 emissions that cargo ships release daily. Arthur hopes to improve the environmental and human health problems by reducing cargo ship emissions, using wind power and a helium-filled parachute to propel cargo ships to their final destinations.
A Wireless, Wearable and Customizable Electronic Solution to Predict and Prevent Autistic Meltdowns.
Raghav Ganesh
2015 Finalist
Meet Raghav. To help those with Autistic Spectrum Disorder and their caregivers, Raghav's invention predicts and prevents Autistic Meltdowns. Monitoring physiological and environmental factors that can cause and trigger stress, Raghav's wireless and wearable machine alerts the wearer and caregiver when any stressors rise above a certain threshold.

His invention allows care to be tailored to individuals' needs by recording all sensory data and therapeutic responses. Raghav hopes his invention can help many people in daily situations, catering to the Autistic population and their caregivers.
Sonya Ganeshram
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Texas
Using Brainwave Patterns to Create Biofeedback Tools
Amulya Garimella
2015 Finalist
Meet Amulya. With a love for both filmmaking and science, the Young Scientist Challenge was the perfect opportunity for Amulya to showcase her talents. With a goal of preventing distractions while trying to concentrate, Amulya invented a distraction monitoring system that alerts the user of distraction by measuring EEG brainwaves. When users get distracted, they will receive an alert reminding them to concentrate and get back to work. Amulya hopes that being distracted while doing homework or working will be a thing of the past!
Rahul Guda
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Nebraska
Mitigating Allergies with Nanoparticles
Iris Gupta
2015 Finalist
Meet Iris. Iris wants to stop allergies at the source. She believes that by inhaling or injecting nanoparticles, allergens' ability to attach to antibodies present in our bodies would be blocked as they entered our systems. Iris believes too many people suffer from allergies, and by testing to find the correct amount of nanoparticles optimal for blocking allergens, her invention aims to give them some much needed relief. Iris' favorite invention in the last 100 years is the Internet, because it makes research and access to information quick and easy.
Camden Hatch
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
California
Jordan Hochman
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Florida
Arjun Jain
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Oregon
Melissa Jones
2015 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Maryland
Ari Kamat
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
New Jersey
Chirag Kumar
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New York
Noel Lange
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Alabama
Circular Ion Accelerator
Alec Lessing
2015 Finalist
Meet Alec. Alec's invention of a circular ion accelerator aims to make entry into space easier by giving multiple energy charges to passing particles before they are ejected from a rocket into space. Current linear ion accelerators only pass charging capacitor plates once before the are released from the rocket and lost into space, but by creating a circular accelerator, Alec hopes this is no longer the case. Alec hopes to win the Young Scientist Challenge to further his circular accelerator prototype. With the world's population growing at an extreme rate, Alec believes entry into space is more important than ever.
Joshua Mbogo
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Pennsylvania
Hailey Miller
2015 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Illinois
Gavin Miller
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Michigan
Ashini Modi
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Louisiana
Arundathi Nair
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Wyoming
David Norwood
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
South Carolina
Joshua Parry
2015 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Ohio
Will Paschal
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Georgia
Zane Pasha
2015 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Nevada
Car Temperature Sensor
Conner Pettit
2015 Finalist
Meet Conner. With soaring summer heat temperatures, Conner invented a device that measures temperature within a car and sends the information to a mobile device. Car temperatures can become much hotter than outside temperatures due to the car's ability to trap heat, and Conner's invention allows the user to know when the car is reaching dangerously hot temperatures. Conner's favorite invention in the last 100 years is the phonograph, which lead the way for the developments of recording and reproducing sound technology.
srivishnu piratla
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Massachusetts
Johnathan Pollard
2015 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Colorado
DUI Detection Using the Pupillary Reflex
Krishna Reddy
2015 Finalist
Meet Krishna. Struck with a great idea, Krishna decided the Young Scientist Challenge was a great way to demonstrate his invention to a large audience. While a breathalyzer for alcohol consumption exists, Krishna felt that there was need for a device that could detect more. Unhappy with the inability for breathalyzer to detect other substances, Krishna created a pupillary reflex computer program and apparatus that measures pupil dilation. Many drugs influence the uncontrollable movement of pupil dilation, and by detecting drugs through dilation, Krishna hopes many more preventable accidents can be stopped.
Reducing Flash Floods Using Optimal Drainage Pipe Sizes, Location and Elevation
Sanjana Shah
2015 Finalist
Meet Sanjana. After realizing the impacts of heaving rainfalls in unprepared areas, Sanjana created a program to detect where cities may need more drains and where they may need to increase current drain pipe sizes. By using pipe network analysis modeled after city drain pipe maps, Sanjana can simulate heavy rainfall to see where possible flooding may occur. Sanjana's favorite invention in the last 100 years is the Internet because it is a tool that allows for the searching, sharing and exchanging of information almost instantly. It can be used to connect globally, ranging from social media networks to aiding medical research across the world.
Fiona Shyne
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Minnesota
Jessica Stricker
2015 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Connecticut
Sofia Tomov
2015 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Tennessee
Olivia Wagner
2015 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Kentucky
Caleb Young
2015 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Mississippi
Photocatalytic Rod for Green and Sustainable Water Purification
Deepika Kurup
2012 Winner
Meet Deepika. She created a cost effective and sustainable water-purification system which harnesses solar energy to disinfect contaminated water. Her innovation aims to help improve the lives of the 1.1 billion people around the world who lack access to clean drinking water.
William Albrecht
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Louisiana
Daniel Becher
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Nebraska
Aaron Cecil-Xavier
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Oklahoma
Venkata Chaluvadi
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
South Carolina
Andrew Clark
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Nevada
Alicia de la Serna
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Ohio
Ryan DeLaney
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Kentucky
Timmy DeMember
2012 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Maryland
Zane Dunham
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Utah
Solar Energy System and Natural Fibonacci Sequence
Aidan Dwyer
2012 Finalist
Aidan is a member of Boy Scouts, Band, and Art Club. He also enjoys sailing, track, and golf.
Jai Ganesh
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Pennsylvania
Naren Gaurav
2012 Finalist
Naren participates in Lego Robotics and Science Bowl. He is also learning to speak Mandarin and plays the piano, basketball and chess.
Brandon Gong
2012 Finalist
Brandon is a member of Science Olympiad, Science Club, and Math Club. He also plays the clarinet, piano, and the oboe.
Aayush Goradia
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
New Jersey
McCade Gowdy
2012 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Iowa
Michelle Gu
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Michigan
Maja Guidry
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
District of Columbia
Daniel Hernandez
2012 State Merit Winner
5th grade
New Mexico
Elliott Hoppe
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Washington
Katie Hudek
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Rhode Island
Christopher Isozaki
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
California
Antaures Jackson
2012 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Georgia
Eric Jenny
2012 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Massachusetts
Oxygen Absorber Bag to Prolong the Shelf-life of Food
Carolyn Jons
2012 Finalist
Carolyn is a member of school orchestra and chamber orchestra. She also enjoys playing soccer and tennis and unicycling.
Kamryn Larsen
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Idaho
Travois with Wheels Helps Parents Carry Children Across the African Desert
Chase Lewis
2012 Finalist
Chase is a member of 4H Club, Math Club, and Boy Scouts. He also enjoys competing in science fairs.
Christopher Lindsay
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Hawaii
Gabriel Mesa
2012 Finalist
Gabriel enjoys playing the saxophone and soccer.
Cole Myers
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Indiana
Brandon Myrick
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Virginia
Nandini Naidu
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Oregon
Ethan Novek
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Connecticut
Emi Otsuki
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Tennessee
Rupa Palanki
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Alabama
Michael Parnell
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Alaska
Nicholas Plandin
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Arizona
Idan Reed
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Kansas
Sean Riera
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Florida
Matthew Ryan
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Wisconsin
Lyndsey Saltz
2012 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Colorado
Chase Saraney
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
North Carolina
A Novel Configuration of Carbon Nanotubes
Anin Sayana
2012 Finalist
Anin is a member of Science Olympiad and Math Club. He also enjoys playing the piano, basketball and tennis.
Ben Shapiro
2012 State Merit Winner
5th grade
New York
Can Summoning a Pharmacist Reduce OTC Drug Errors
Patrick Shea
2012 Finalist
Patrick participates in Science Fairs and competes in basketball, hockey, baseball, golf, and track.
Aishani Sil
2012 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Texas
Eco-friendly Clay to Save Coral
Anishaa Sivakumar
2012 Finalist
Anishaa is a member of Science Club, Math Club, and Science Olympiad. She also enjoys singing, dancing, Taekwondo, and tennis.
Martha Skehan
2012 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Delaware
Emma St. Louis
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Minnesota
Tara Suresh
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Missouri
Ajay Varadhan
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Illinois
Michael Zaluki
2012 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New Hampshire