Three Indian Americans and three other Indian-origin teens are among those named winners of the 2015 Google Science Fair announced last month.
Indian Americans Anurudh Ganesan, Deepika Kurup and Pranav Sivakumar won the Lego Education Builder, National Geographic Explorer and Virgin Galactic Pioneer awards, respectively.Girish Kumar, of Singapore; Lalita Prasida Sripada Srisai, of India; and Krtin Nithiyanandam of the United Kingdom were honored with the Google Technologist, Community Impact and Scientific American Innovator awards, respectively.A total of nine people were named winners.
Ganesan, a 15-year-old from Maryland, won for his project called VAXXWAGON, an innovative eco-friendly, “no ice, no electric” active refrigeration system for last-leg vaccine transportation.
He explains that the current last-leg vaccine transportation to remote locations requires both ice packs and electricity. With that being a problem in developing countries, the Indian American designed and developed a no ice, no electric active refrigeration vaccine transportation system.
“Not only is this system unique and innovative, but more importantly, it will solve the current global problem,” he said in his bio on the science fair’s Web site. “This patent-pending system will revolutionize last-leg vaccine transportation by maintaining viable vaccines in the safe and effective temperature range.”
“I am confident that VAXXWAGON will save countless lives by providing safe and effective vaccines globally,” he added.
Kurup, 17, of New Hampshire, won her award for a novel photocatalytic pervious composites for removing multiple classes of toxins from water.
The teen said that about one-ninth of the world’s population lacks access to clean water, with roughly 500,000 children dying each year as a result of water-related diseases.
“This unacceptable social injustice compelled me to find a solution to the world’s clean water problem,” she said. “I synthesized a novel pervious photocatalytic composite that integrates an enhanced advanced oxidation process with filtration to remove multiple classes of toxins from water. The composite is a catalyst that uses natural sunlight and raw materials that are readily available.”
What Kurup created has applications in point-of-use water purification systems, wastewater treatment plants and coatings for pervious concrete pavements.
Sivakumar, 15, of Illinois, created an automated search for gravitationally lensed quasars in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey.