Excitement for INWED begins as over half of finalists of The Big Bang Competition are female

Jun 21, 2022

With International Women in Engineering Day (INWED) on Thursday 23 June, excitement is also growing in anticipation of The Big Bang Competition award ceremony which takes place on the afternoon of Wednesday 22 June.

Over half of the finalists in this year’s Competition are female, which means there is a good chance that young girls could be crowned as the UK top Engineer or Scientist of the Year.

The awards will be announced live at (and live streamed from) The Big Bang Fair, the largest celebration of STEM in the UK for young people. The free to attend event will feature scores of quality hands-on activities to inspire young people to discover and explore what a career in STEM can offer. Families, home educators and school groups have the chance to visit at The Big Bang Fair Unlocked, taking place on Thursday 23 June from 4pm to 8pm.

Finalists vying for the top awards, with details of their projects, are:

Aditya Mathur, Ali Kamel and Lucas Hoffman, a year 12 student team from Leicester Grammar School in Leicestershire, who caught the eyes of the judges with their invention, AgriPod, which is designed to tackle fertiliser misapplication by farmers. The creation followed Aditya’s visit to a relative’s farm in northern India, where he discovered a vast array of potential issues that could be addressed with a technology and data-based solution.

Anastasia Herries, a year 11 student from St George’s School in Hertfordshire, wowed the Competition judges with her project designed to address the need for alternative and eco-friendly slug repellent. The experiment was born from Anastasia’s desire to find a proven solution to protect her own vegetable bed from slug damage.

Avye Couloute, a year 9 student from Surbiton High School in London, impressed the judges with her invention which seeks to improve indoor air quality by monitoring and reacting to CO2 levels. The solution can benefit classrooms, collaborative working spaces, and seated eating areas in the hospitality sector.

Connie Gray, a year 9 student from Liverpool Life Sciences UTC in Liverpool, excited the Competition judges with her research project all about comparing the structure of the features of birds from different climates and environments to each other. Her work aims to help with conservation efforts in areas of the world affected by climate change.

Divit Kelmani, a year 10 student from Dr Challoner’s Grammar School in Buckinghamshire, grabbed the attention of the judges after his project discovered that the World Health Organisation (WHO) has declared antimicrobial resistance (AMR) as one of ‘the top 10 global public health threats facing humanity’. If antimicrobial resistance remains as significant as it is currently, in a worst-case scenario, it is estimated that cumulative global economic losses would reach $3 trillion annually.

Erin Carr, a year 8 student from Invicta Grammar School in Kent, caught the eyes of the judges with her research project which aims to investigate comparisons between using all senses and the loss of one, with the hope of finding out how fast the brain adapts.

Lily-Mai Spinks, a year 12 student from Sir Isaac Newton Sixth Form Free School in Norwich, wowed the competition judges with her invention, ISOPOD, a waterproof cardboard tent with a concertina design, aiming to provide a user and eco-friendly festival camping alternative.

Lucy Coleman, a year 12 student from Sandbach High School and Sixth From College in Cheshire, impressed the judges with her unique design of a weather-proof open-air office, which impressively creates a solution to allow for a healthier work environment when working from home. The project followed Lucy seeing her parents working throughout the pandemic and she set about creating a product that would provide the health benefits of working outdoors.

Om Patel, a year 11 student from Queen Elizabeth’s School in London, excited the judges with his design of a prototype brace, which aims to support people who cannot lift their leg high enough whilst walking. Om’s brace supports the leg from knee to the foot and ensures that the person can walk more naturally.

Rick Suzuki, a year 12 student from Rugby School in Warwickshire, grabbed the attention of the judges with his experiment which is impressively designed to address issues facing the planet due to the consumption of fossil fuels. The experiment was born from Rick’s concern for the environment, and for tackling both the problems of fossil fuel shortage and global plastic waste.

Ryan Stubbs and William Bradshaw, a year 8 student team from St Faith’s School in Cambridge, piqued the curiosity of the competition judges with their invention, ElectroPi, which is designed to plant and water seeds based on soil moisture levels. The invention was created to speed up planting time and improve the quality of planting conditions and is controlled from a device, such as an iPad.

Winners of The Big Bang Competition will be announced at The Big Bang Fair on Wednesday 22 June.

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