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BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition: Success for Northern Ireland students

Published 09/01/2016

Northern Ireland students were formally recognised at the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition
Northern Ireland students were formally recognised at the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition

The winners of the 52nd BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition have been announced.

Maria Louise Fufezan (aged 16) and Diana Bura (aged 15) from Dublin have taken home the top prize for their project entitled, ‘An Investigation into the Effects of Enzymes used in Animal Feed Additives on the Lifespan of Caenorhabditis Elegans’.

Northern Ireland students, who this week showcased their projects at the prestigious event, were also formally recognised at the awards ceremony.

Beating off competition from a total of 26 Northern Ireland finalists, St Patrick’s High School in Armagh picked up the award for ‘Best Northern Ireland School’ and they also received the accolade for ‘BT Northern Ireland Best Project’.

‘Power Down to Power Up’, was entered in the Social & Behavioural Sciences category at junior level and the group also received 2nd Place in the Social & Behavioural Junior Group for their entry.

A second project entered by the school entitled ‘An investigation into how foam reduces spillages in liquids’ in the Chemical, Physical & Mathematical Sciences category at junior level was also highly commended.

St Catherine’s College in Armagh received the ‘BT-Best Project in Irish’ Award for their project ‘Eiseapláinéid a Fhiosrú’. They were also highly commended for the same project in the Chemical, Physical & Mathematical Sciences category at intermediate level.

A second project from St Catherine’s College was also highly commended - ‘Irish dancing is a sport, not just a hobby’ in the Biological and Ecological category at junior level.

Further awards were presented to Northern Ireland schools at the ceremony:

• St Killian’s College in Antrim picked up 3rd Place in the ‘Technology Junior Group’ for their project ‘Speed Alert Shamer’ and they were also highly commended for their project ‘Distance Diagnostics’ in the Technology category at junior level.

• Rathmore Gs in Antrim were highly commended for their project ‘Dry Your Eyes’ which was entered into the Biological & Ecological category at intermediate level.

• Ballymena Academy in Antrim were highly commended for their project ‘Apollo 10D’ which was entered into the Chemical, Physical & Mathematical Sciences category at intermediate level.

• South Eastern Regional College-Bangor Campus were highly commended for their project ‘Investigating the antibacterial effects of honey’ in the Biological & Ecological category at senior level.

• St Mary’s College in Derry-Londonderry were highly commended for two projects in the Chemical, Physical & Mathematical Sciences category for their projects ‘Investigating the effect of reheating pasta on the rate of digestion of its starch by amylase’ at intermediate level and ‘Investigating the effect of various dietary supplements on the activity of lipase in digesting fat’ at junior level.

Alex Crossan, Managing Director Networks, BT Northern Ireland, said: "We are proud that the BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition continues to act as a springboard for future entrepreneurs, academics, scientists and technologists and we have countless past winners who are proof of that.

"I would like to sincerely congratulate every single student who took part this week and to the thousands of other students who submitted a project but unfortunately didn’t qualify.


"Of course, particular congratulations must go to Maria and Diana, who will now join a prestigious list of esteemed winners and go on to represent Ireland at the EU Young Scientist later this year."

Congratulating the prize winners, Education Minister John O’Dowd said: "I have been very impressed with the standard of the entries and also by the enthusiasm and depth of knowledge shown by all students who have taken part in the Exhibition. You should all be proud of what you’ve achieved.

"It is important to recognise not only the hard work of the pupils, but also the support and dedication shown by school staff in assisting students to bring their projects to the exhibition. Such support is a crucial element in the development of young people and I commend teachers, classroom assistants and other school staff in all the local schools that made it to the finals event in Dublin."

Almost 1200 students from across the island of Ireland covering 550 projects from 29 counties competed in the RDS for the coveted title of ‘BT Young Scientist(s) & Technologist(s) of the Year’.

The award for Best Individual went to transition year student Shane Curran (aged 16) from Terenure College, Dublin for his project ‘Velodrome: The Automated Logistics Fulfilment Platform’.  Shane was entered in the technology category at intermediate level.

The award for Runner-Up Group went to 6th year students Gabriel Barat (aged 17) and Adrian Wolniak (aged 16) from Synge Street CBS, Dublin for their project ‘A Mathematical Model of Coffee Rust’. The group were entered in the chemical, physical & mathematical sciences category at senior level.

The award for Individual Runner-Up went to 5th year student Renuka Chintapalli (aged 16) from Loreto Secondary School, Balbriggan, Dublin for her project ‘Developing a predictive tool for identifying FLNc-associated biomarkers of oesophageal cancer metastasis’. Renuka was entered in the biological & ecological sciences category at senior level.

The BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition continues on Saturday, 10th January and is open to the public from 09:30 – 17:30. Guests can expect to be wowed by a line-up of live shows including mentalist David Meade, Celestial Voyage 3D and the renowned World of Robots and TITAN the Robot.

For information, an exhibition map and schedule of events, visitors can download the free BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition app now. Alternatively, log onto btyoungscientist.com, check out facebook.com/BTYSTE, follow on Twitter or call 1800 924 362 or from Northern Ireland call 0800 917 1297.

Online Editors

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