A peek into minds of future scientists

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Bangalore, Nov 21, 2013, DHNS: As many as 126 projects, by 200 students from across the country, were on display at The Initiative for Research & Innovation in Science 2013, India’s largest research-based national science fair, which was inaugurated at Christ College on Thursday.

The projects were shortlisted from more than 2,000 in the event sponsored by Intel India in association with the Department of Science and Technology and the Confederation of Indian Industry.

According to Intel Technology India Director A Chadha, students were required to create not just a science project, but also demonstrate originality of thought, innovation and advanced research processes.

The aim of the fair, he said, was to encourage students to carry the skills they gained into other areas of research and mentoring to accelerate innovation in India. Schooling was no longer about studying mathematics and physics, but using one’s knowledge and applying it in real life, he said. “As a country, we need more innovation, leading to new solutions to solve national problems,” he said.

Many project ideas stemmed from the students’ astute observations of problems in the world around them, such as inadequate infrastructure, to cope with a growing population.

While Vrittika Bagabia, 15, and Tanvi Garg, 15, of Delhi-NCR, came up with a solution to address parking space shortage by changing the angles of parking spaces, S Jayakrishnan, 15, of Kerala, had formulated a traffic light signal which could be controlled by police and hospitals to clear way for the ambulance.

Vrittika said she was motivated to improve parking infrastructure out of frustration of once having to wait an hour for a parking space, only for someone else to grab it.

Using a series of equations, the students found they could save 16 per cent of space needed for parking by changing the parking angle, and inclining parking slots. Their plan could be implemented using existing technology, and would be embraced by the public, Vrittika said.

Across 17 categories, 35 national awards will be distributed, along with one special award for an innovative teacher and six special awards by ministries and social foundations. National winners will represent India at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Los Angeles, US, in May 2014.

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