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Whizz kids does Lanka proud

Three students Abhishek, Chamindu and Lochana from Sri Lanka have won five awards at Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) 2016, the world's largest high school science research competition. Abhishek Gomes from Belvoir College International, Colombo won a grand award and two special awards for his wearable device which translates American Sign Language into English while Chamindu Jayasanka from Hanwella Rajasinghe Central College and P.M. Lochana Piyumantha from Madampe Senanayake Central College also received two special awards for their outstanding innovative and research skills.

Originality


Lochana Piyumantha, Abhishek Gomes and Chamindu Jayasanka

A third place grand award of US$1,000 for his project in the Embedded Systems category at the Intel ISEF Grand Awards Ceremony was won by Abhishek. He also won a special award of US$2,000 from Synaptics Organisation in USA and US$500 from the Patent and Trademark Office Society of the United States. Chamindu's 'Modified and Adjustable Crutches' project won a special award of US$1,000 from the Patent and Trademark Office Society of the United States for his outstanding originality and clarity in science and technology. The Nano technology-based solution for resistant endometrial cancer cells from Lochana won a special award of US$1,000 from Qatar Foundation for the excellence he showed in human life sciences.

Abhishek, explaining the experience of taking part in an international competition said, "It was a life changing experience for me. I met smartest people in the world and got the opportunity to share ideas with them who have similar interests. It was a quite a good experience."

Inventor

However, he said that he wished more students took part in science competitions in the country adding that only a very few students from international schools take part in the Junior Inventor of the Year.

"Taking part in these competitions will be a good opportunity to showcase their talent and it will be a good experience for them as well," he said.

Abhishek intends to develop the product by improving certain features further such as the time taken for processing the words and increase the words pre-recorded to increase the volume of the words.

"My ultimate goal is to make use of the skills of hearing/speaking impaired people for the development of the country, says Abishek.

Chamindu, one of the participants who won a special award for his modified and adjustable crutches said that he is interested in inventing more products to support disabled people and elderly people. "This product of mine enables user to be comfortable without compromising the safety and it would also reduce the dependency of disabled or elderly persons. I hope to come up with more invention in future," he said.

Growing

Revealing his future plans, Lochana said that he wants to be a Cardiologist. However he intends to do a research and create a drug to prevent cancer cells from growing. He has mastered the area of his research. "I was interested in reading science journals from small days and I always wanted to invent a cure for the people who are suffering from cancer," he said.

Junior Inventor of the Year hosted by the Institute of Engineers of Sri Lanka (IESL) is the competition which paves the way for these students to take part in international competitions and gain more knowledge as well as experience. President of Institute of Engineers of Sri Lanka Jayawilal Meegoda expressing his view said that The Junior Inventor of the Year competition is being held for 30 years and it has produced outstanding personalities.

"I see great potential in these young contestants and the exposure they get by taking part in these competitions is very important. Abhishek is one of the most talented students we have ever seen," he added.

Contestants

According to Meegoda, workshops are being held throughout the year to educate the contestants and prepare them for international competitions."We make sure that students get maximum support.

They are really talented and they have a bright future ahead," he said.

With the intention of encouraging millions of students to explore their passion for developing innovations, Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, the world's largest high school science research competition was held on May 8 to 13 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona of United States.

- K.S.

 

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