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!
Enhancing Wind Power
Maanasa Mendu
2016 Winner
Meet Maanasa. Maanasa hopes her invention helps make wind power a globally applicable energy source. She created a device utilizing piezoelectricity materials that are both eco-friendly and cost efficient.
Anvitha Addanki
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Massachusetts
Anusha Allamsetty
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Virginia
Arya Bairat
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Connecticut
Hannah Bazemore
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New Hampshire
Aquabot - An Arduino Based Robot for Testing and Monitoring Surface Water Quality
Meghna Behari
2016 Finalist
Meet Meghna. After learning how difficult it is to analyze the quality of hard to reach water sources, Meghna created a device to help access hard to reach waterways. Monitoring temperature, conductivity and pH levels, Meghna hopes to revolutionize the way scientists conduct research in the future.
William Briggs
2016 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Florida
Samantha Caron
2016 State Merit Winner
7th grade
North Carolina
Rushil Chander
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Texas
Rohan Datta
2016 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Georgia
Improving the Accuracy of Kicking a Soccer Ball Using Sensory Feedback
Amelia Day
2016 Finalist
Meet Amelia. To help the visual and hearing impaired along with the injured, Amelia's invention aims to improve accuracy of kicking a soccer ball using sensory feedback using a light and sound based system. Amelia hopes that her invention will help people's physical capabilities around the world both now and in the future.
Olivia Garner
2016 State Merit Winner
7th grade
South Carolina
William Grzelak
2016 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Ohio
Hunter Hong
2016 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Washington
Arjun Jain
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Oregon
Vijay Josephs
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New Jersey
Sharvil Kaware
2016 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Nebraska
Low Cost CPR Simluator
Mrinali Kesavadas
2016 Finalist
Meet Mrinali. Mrinali's low cost CPR simulator aims to help save lives in underdeveloped countries. The simulator is made of low cost materials, is portable and also has the capability to run a computer based program to provide instant feedback to the user to assure that they are performing CPR in the correct way.
ALEXANDER KNOLL
2016 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Idaho
Kathryn Lampo
2016 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Colorado
Nano-Cellulose Beads to End Stormwater Pollution
Sara Makboul
2016 Finalist
Meet Sara. Sara invented Nano Cellulose Beads to counteract stormwater pollution in an effort to improve the quality of water. Sara plans to create her invention by using the absorbent cellulose, which will be extracted from leaf remains. Combined with sodium polyacrylate and once dispersed on land, excess stormwater runoff can be absorbed to decrease the amount of pollution and improve water quality.
Rhea Malhotra
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Pennsylvania
Gavin Miller
2016 State Merit Winner
Michigan
Optimized Diesel Particulate Filter Design
Rohit Mital
2016 Finalist
Meet Rohit. Wanting to eliminate untimely deaths due to air pollution, Rohit invented a device to control pollution from diesel automobiles by optimizing particulate filters. Through researching filter cell designs, Rohit found that his invention not only has the capability to save 250 million gallons of fuel per year, but also reducing particulate matter and saving lives all around the world.
Semiconductor Battery
Will Paschal
2016 Finalist
Meet Will. Will wants to create an alternative method of storing electricity that is safer and more efficient then what is currently being offered. Will invented a semiconductor battery, and believes that creating an electric current between existing materials can power any electrical device imagined.
Gitanjali Rao
2016 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Tennessee
Quinn Robinson
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Illinois
Emma Rollins
2016 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Delaware
Alexandra Rosenthal
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Alabama
Sujay Swain
2016 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Maryland
Make the Pill fit the Ill
Sofia Tomov
2016 Finalist
Meet Sofia. Sofia believes her invention can help limit negative side effects from prescription medications. By using fast computing methods to detect mutations that would cause a person to suffer from side effects of their medication, Sofia hopes she can help improve the health of humans all over the world through safer prescriptions.
Kaushik Tota
2016 State Merit Winner
7th grade
California
Mudricity - Making a More Efficient Microbial Fuel Cell for use in Developing Countries
Rohan Wagh
2016 Finalist
Meet Rohan. Wanting to eliminate energy poverty in underdeveloped countries, Rohan invented a new method to increase the efficiency of a microbial fuel cell. Rohan believes his invention, which is compact sized and low maintenance, can be distributed and used all around the world.
Olivia Wagner
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Kentucky
Clara Wayne
2016 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Wisconsin
Camille Will
2016 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Minnesota
Bioplastics - Redefining Future
Kaien Yang
2016 Finalist
Meet Kaien. Kaien's invention focuses on creating a biodegradable plastic to help reduce pollution worldwide. Using a combination of natural biodegradable resources, Kaien believes his invention has the capability of solving the one of the world's most persistent problems.
Leo Yu
2016 State Merit Winner
5th grade
New York
PolluCell: Using Waster Materials and Pollution to Generate Electricity
Sahil Doshi
2014 Winner
Meet Sahil. Sahil entered the competition because he loves science and he wanted to get to know others who shared similar interests. His battery cell invention will use carbon dioxide and other waste materials to help clear the atmosphere from greenhouse gas emissions and, additionally, be a low-cost alternative for electricity in developing countries.
Alex Albert
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Washington
Breaking the AGE Barrier!!!
Mythri Ambatipudi
2014 Finalist
Meet Mythri. Mythri’s invention seeks to address the root cause of many life-threatening diseases, like cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. Her passion for science, research, and computational biochemistry fueled her desire to enter the Young Scientist Challenge. Mythri loves reading books, both fiction and nonfiction, on her Kindle.
Riley Baldwin
2014 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Nevada
Ahmed Bawany
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Missouri
Nikhil Behari
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Pennsylvania
Adam Bender
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Arizona
AARON CECIL-XAVIER
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Oklahoma
Development of a Search and Rescue Robot
David Cohen
2014 Finalist
Meet David. After hearing about the devastating tornado in Granbury, Texas last year, David started thinking about how technology could help locate victims in a disaster. He designed his rescue robot which he believes is unique in that it could survive being crushed and might be able to squeeze through smaller gaps.
Jacques Coury
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Florida
Noah Crafts
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Georgia
Macee Eppard
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Colorado
Gloria Fountain
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Illinois
Morgan Gibbs
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Ohio
McCade Gowdy
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Iowa
Charlie Heinecke
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Minnesota
Katie Hettinga
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Idaho
Elin Hu
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New York
WANBRC - Calculations that Save Lives
Ana Humphrey
2014 Finalist
Meet Ana. Ana thinks her invention, WANBRC, has the possibility to change thousands of lives. She hopes the resources of the Young Scientist Challenge will help improve WANBRC so she can help better the lives of others.

Ana's favorite invention of the last 100 years is the 3D printer because it can create anything from toys to clothing to tools for robots. 'If used effectively, it could cut manufacturing time and costs, and give the consumer incredible options for customization.'
Reducing the Amount of Electricity Used by Computers using Green Techologies
Christopher Isozaki
2014 Finalist
Meet Christopher. Christopher’s computer cooling device, which generates electricity by harvesting the heat of the computer, is designed to help save the environment by reducing the consumption of electricity and be economical by reducing energy costs.
Hyrum Ivie
2014 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Utah
Gaurav Khot
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Nebraska
Make Driving Safer by Reducing the Probability of Hydroplaning
Anthony Kim
2014 Finalist
Meet Anthony. Anthony’s innovation helps to make driving safer by reducing the probability of hydroplaning. He thought the Young Scientist Challenge would be a fun opportunity to invent something new and help the world too.

Anthony’s favorite invention of the last 100 years is the automobile because it is the machine that transports people much faster to places.
Isaiah King
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
District of Columbia
Liam Kivirist
2014 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Wisconsin
Solar Powered Air Purifying Window
Jai Kumar
2014 Finalist
Meet Jai. Jai saw the Young Scientist Challenge as an opportunity to challenge him in identifying and solving a major issue in the world. Past participants inspired him and Jai was also thrilled at the prospect of working with 3M mentors.

Jai enjoys exploring how to use technology to solve everyday problems. He’s even created a gaming system for the senior center where he volunteers and an automatic light dimmer that sense sound levels in a school cafeteria.
SHREYA KURDUKAR
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Virginia
Gabrielle Liu
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Tennessee
Voltage Generated By Oscillations From Robotic Simulator
Andrew Masek
2014 Finalist
Meet Andrew. Andrew’s idea captures energy to recharge a battery using man’s favorite 4-legged friend! Andrew thought the Young Scientist Challenge would be a great opportunity to have fun and learn about science. In 15 years, Andrew hopes to be an electrical engineer.
Matthew Mecham
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New Mexico
Nandini Naidu
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Oregon
Arundathi Nair
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Wyoming
Vishwa Nathan
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Massachusetts
Annie Ostojic
2014 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Indiana
Vaidya Parthasarathy
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Texas
Biolight for Future Architecture
Nikita Rafikov
2014 Finalist
Meet Nikita. Nikita entered the Young Scientist Challenge to showcase his talents, hoping it would help further his dream of going to college early. He also is fascinated by space exploration.

His favorite invention of the last 100 years is the International Space Station. “I like the idea of men living in space and I get fascinated by the opportunity of Space exploration.”
Vignesh Rajmohan
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
South Carolina
Anushka Ray
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New Hampshire
Chase Saraney
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
North Carolina
Katie Sesi
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Michigan
Erin Smith
2014 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Kansas
Anuragh Sundar
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
California
Eeshan Tripathii
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
New Jersey
maggie walker
2014 State Merit Winner
7th grade
West Virginia
Jason Wood
2014 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Maryland
A Driver's Companion - Using Brainwave and Eye Blinks to Detect Driver Drowsiness
Katherine Wu
2014 Finalist
Meet Katherine. Katherine’s invention uses brainwaves to proactively prevent drowsy driving. With her invention, Katherine hopes to inform people of the dangers of drowsy driving, so they can lead safer lives.

Katherine’s favorite invention from the last 100 years is the internet because it’s a network that has connected people across the globe and changed the world. “People share information, work, and communicate through the internet all the time now.”
Salt Water Sandless Sandbag
Peyton Robertson
2013 Winner
Meet Peyton. America’s Top Young Scientist today, world renowned inventor tomorrow. Peyton’s invention of a more efficient sandbag to reduce salt water flood damage captured our judges’ attention. But it was his commanding delivery, innovative thinking, and sound grasp of the scientific method which captured him the title.

As America’s Top Young Scientist, it’s no wonder Peyton’s favorite subjects are science and math. He enjoys researching a problem or challenge and thinking through alternatives and creative solutions.
Alexandra Albrecht
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Louisiana
Layaa Amirthalingam
2013 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Texas
Daniel Bayliss
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
South Carolina
Alexander Bernat
2013 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Illinois
A Passion for Fashion and an Eye for Good Exercise
Reeny Botros
2013 Finalist
Meet Reeny. She has a passion for fashion as well as helping people. Couple that with her love of the challenge math and science bring and you get the makings of a fashion forward future doctor. Her Young Scientist Challenge entry illustrates how science can improve lives in many different ways – all while being a lot of fun in the process.
Aaron Cecil-Xavier
2013 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Oklahoma
New Electrolyte Compound
Anish Chaluvadi
2013 Finalist
Meet Anish. He enjoys playing music to relax, but he also enjoys the thrill of overcoming a good challenge. That’s why he loves science and math. Science is one of the subjects he most enjoys because it’s hands-on and you get to experience it.
He aspires to be a biomedical engineer so he can make a career of overcoming tough challenges.
Madison Crosby
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Missouri
Improved Indoor Biomass Cook Stove
Daniel Culver
2013 Finalist
Meet Daniel. He believes that science improves the condition of the world. His innovative indoor biomass cook stove shows exactly how Daniel’s science acumen and inventive spirit could truly improve conditions for many people around the world for years to come.

In addition to improving the world through science, Daniel dreams of becoming an aerospace engineer or aviator so he can fly.
Pegasus - Hybrid Vehicle Charging System
Tim DeMember
2013 Finalist
Meet Tim. An aspiring mechanical engineer, it’s no wonder he enjoys building, creating and just plain figuring out how things work. The inspiration for his Young Scientist Challenge invention came from watching an index card attached to a bicycle frame – proving that science really is everywhere! Be open and stay curious…your next innovative idea could be right in front of you.
Cormac Dolezal
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Minnesota
Joseph Farah
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Massachusetts
Irene Fernald
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New Mexico
Matthew Fleming
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Pennsylvania
Isaiah Florea
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Nebraska
Abigail Fry
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Kansas
Alexander Hardin
2013 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Arizona
Elliott Hoppe
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Washington
Publicly Available Databases Containing Biological Information
Katie Hudek
2013 Finalist
Meet Katie. When she’s not enjoying her many hobbies or excelling in her favorite subjects of science, math, and english, she is dreaming about being a surgeon so she can help people.

One look at her Young Scientist Challenge entry on Computational Biology and you’ll see why Katie will make a fine surgeon someday.
Aditya Jog
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Ohio
Andee Joos
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Iowa
Camera Centering Tripod Mount
Srijay Kasturi
2013 Finalist
Meet Srijay. He understands the power of a good story and the fun of building things grounded in science. An aspiring filmmaker or computer science expert, Srijay’s interests blended perfectly with the 2013 Young Scientist Challenge. The skills he’s developed pursuing his hobbies served him well in creating his finalist winning video entry.
Green Energy Electricity from Grass Waste
Edward Kim
2013 Finalist
Meet Edward. He dreams of one day becoming a neurosurgeon, to fulfill his duty to contribute to society by finding cures for problems to end people’s suffering. Neurology is still somewhat of a mystery and one Edward would love to help solve.

You can thank his 8th grade teacher for encouraging him to enter the Young Scientist Challenge to share his idea to make electricity from grass waste through a fuel cell system. Economical and eco-friendly, his fuel cell system may just become a viable alternative energy source one day.
Anfanioluwa Lawal
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Wisconsin
Michael Lee
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
New York
Abigail Martin
2013 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Indiana
iCUpooch - an interactive care unit for dogs
Brooke Martin
2013 Finalist
Meet Brooke. With a Utility Patent Application pending for her invention iCUpooch, an interactive care unit for dogs and the subject of her video submission entry for the Young Scientist Challenge, it’s no wonder she is one of the 2013 finalists.

Brooke is determined to pursue a career in science. She would like to do something where she can help to improve the lives of others, whether it's by finding cures for diseases, innovating new technology, or helping to solve crimes.
Danielle Martino
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Florida
Sarah Mostafa
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
New Jersey
Nandini Naidu
2013 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Oregon
Rupa Palanki
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Alabama
Nicholas Pett
2013 State Merit Winner
7th grade
Maryland
Nikita Rafikov
2013 State Merit Winner
5th grade
Georgia
Rahul Ramesh
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Colorado
Nicholas Roberts
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Alaska
Scott Rosenbloom
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Virginia
Steer Smart
Aishani Sil
2013 Finalist
Meet Aishani. She wants to be a scientist to contribute to future scientific discoveries that benefit mankind. And with her Young Scientist Challenge entry, she is already off to an impressive start.
She entered the Young Scientist Challenge to share her idea for Steer Smart, an application designed to reduce texting and driving, and hopes the application will motivate drivers to put away their phones, focus on the road ahead, and save thousands of lives in the process.
Harper Slusher
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
North Carolina
Erik Svetin
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Hawaii
Maggie Walker
2013 State Merit Winner
5th grade
West Virginia
Robert Walters
2013 State Merit Winner
6th grade
Tennessee
Maximillian Wilde
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
Nevada
Michelle Xu
2013 State Merit Winner
8th grade
California