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Science Fairs

SPIE supports local, state and international science and engineering fairs by providing several Special Awards in Optics and Photonics. Volunteer judges review projects displayed at science fairs and select best projects where students apply optics or photonics related technology to their project.

The Society has awarded over $80,000 in cash awards since 2001 to over 400 talented students from elementary through high school.

SPIE volunteers are welcome to judge optics or photonics related projects at science fairs. If you are interested in volunteering or if you know of a science fair coming up in your area that we should be a part of, contact Ms. Pascale Barnett, Education Services Coordinator, pascale@spie.org.

In 2011 SPIE awarded cash prizes totaling over $18,000 to 80 talented students from elementary through high school.

Intel International Science and Engineering Fair

Los Angeles, California (8-13 May 2011)

SPIE Volunteer Judges: Waheb Bishara (UCLA), Jeff Güell (Boeing Co.), Virendra Mahajan (Aerospace Corp.), Albert Okorogu (Aerospace Corp.), Nathaniel Stern (CalTech) Aram Tanielian (Revtek Inc.), Roger Xie (Western Photonics Technology).


From left to right: Aram Tanielian, Jeff Güell, Christopher Nielsen, Anthony Surganov, Dylan Dalrymple, and Nathaniel Stern.

Dylan Cooper Dalrymple (1st Place), Pensacola High School, Florida
Project: Creation and Navigation of a 3D Environment with Stereo Vision, a Continuation

Christopher S. Nielsen (2nd Place), Home School, Canada
Project: Indoor Ground Manifold Tracking through Low-Cost Stereoscopy

Anthony V. Surganov (3rd Place), Lane Tech College Prep High School, Illinois
Project: Passive Solar Tracking


63rd Annual State Science Day

Columbus, Ohio (7 May 2011)

SPIE Volunteer Judges: Monish Chatterjee (Univ. of Dayton), Maureen Crotty, Milo Hyde (AFIT), Jason Schmidt (AFIT).


SPIE Optics & Photonics Science Fair winner, Joshua Marino, standing next to his project at the 63rd Annual State Science Day in Columbus, Ohio.

Shreyas Tallamraju (1st Place), Solon Middle School
Project: Wind Energy: A Compare and Contrast Between Piezoelectric Vibro-Wind Energy Generation Panels and Traditional Wind Turbine Solutions.

Joshua Marino (2nd Place), Carroll High School
Project: Replacing Common Household Lighting with Fiber Optics

Sam Stroebel (3rd Place)
Project: Infrared Spectral Analysis of Erythropoietia








California State Science Fair

Los Angeles, California (2-3 May 2011)

SPIE Volunteer Judges: Jason Kriesel (Opto Knowledge Systems, Inc.), Makan Mohageg (OE Waves Inc.), Albert Okorogu (The Aerospace Corp.), Ikbal Sencan (UCLA), Donovan Steutel, Aram Tanielian (Revtek Inc.).


Alyssa Chan accepting her award from A. Tanielian

Paul Dennig, Jr. accepting his award from A. Tanielian.

Alyssa L. Chan (Senior Div. Special Award), La Costa High School
Project: Development of a Novel Optical Sensor for Simultaneous Detection of Total and Specific Volatile Organic Compounds

Paul A. Dennig, Jr. (Junior Div., Special Award), Blach Intermediate School
Project: From Concentrator to Tracker: An Innovative Solution for Maximizing Electric Power from Solar Photovoltaic Cells



Rohan Rastogi (center right) receiving his award from SPIE Volunteer Judges, D. Steutel, A. Tanielian, and A. Okorogu. Anirudh Pochiraju was not present.

Anirudh Pochiraju and Rohan Rastogi (Senior Div., Recognition Award), University High School
Team Project: Bimodal Ultrasound and Optical Approach for Breast Cancer Imaging without Coregistration









J. Berman (2nd from left), B. Kotzubei (3rd), and A. Veseliza (4th) receiving their aard from SPIE Volunteer Judges, A. Okorogu (left), A. Tanielian, (2nd from right) and D. Steutel (right).

Jonathan Berman, Benjamin Kotzubei, and Austin Veseliza (Junior Div., Recognition Award), The Mirmon School
Team Project: The Solar Solution







59th New Mexico Science and Engineering Fair

Sorocco, New Mexico (9-10 April 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judge: Hector Erives (New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology).


A view of the exhibit floor at the New Mexico Science and Engineering Fair.

Travis Crockett (1st Place), Cleveland High School
Project: Modeling and Design of a Low Earth Orbit Space Debris Amateur Tracking Station

Evan Crockett (2nd Place), Mountain View Middle School
Project: GPS: Galactic Positioning System

Jacqueline Baros (3rd Place), St. Mary Middle School
Project: Where is the Perfect Image?


56th Annual Colorado Science and Engineering Fair

Fort Collins, Colorado (7-9 April 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judges: Sergio Carbajo (Colorado State Univ.), Yuri Sikorski (Beckman Coulter Inc.).


From top left to bottom right: Phani Gaddipati, Olivia Eppler, Luis Cruz, Amy Lyne, Nicolai Lopez-Butynski and Sam Raphael.

Amy Lyne (1st Place, Senior Div.), Brush High School
Project: Efficient solar-powered hydrogen production

Phani Gaddipati (2nd Place, Senior Div.), Discovery Canyon Campus High School
Project: Enhancing AlGaN bases semiconductors with dislocation analysis and thin film optimization




Luis Cruz (3rd Place, Senior Div.), Harrison High School
Project: Electroculography: A New Approach on Human-Computer-Interface

Olivia Eppler (1st Place, Junior Div.), Turner Middle School
Project: Dye Sensitized Solar Cells

Sam Raphael (2nd Place, Junior Div.), The Classical Academy Colorado Spring
Project: A light in the dark

Nicolai Lopez-Butynski (3rd Place, Junior Div.), Goodnight Elementary School
Project: Lights Out: Does temperature affect the glow rate of a light stick?


56th Orange County Science and Engineering Fair

Costa Mesa, California (3-10 April 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judges: Arjun Kar-Roy (TowerJazz), Claire Robertson (Univ. of California, Irvine).


Kieran Mital (1st Place), Fairmont Private School
Project:

Austin Russell (2nd Place), St. Margarets Episcopal
Project:

Anirudh Pochiraju and Rohan Rastogi (3rd Place), Irvine High School and University High School
Team Project: Bimodal Ultrasound and Optical Approach for Breast Cancer Imaging without Coregistration

Lena Oliver (3rd Place), Oakridge Private School
Project: Measuring Sugar Content of Liquids Using a Laser Pointer


Georgia Science and Engineering Fair

Athens, Georgia (1-2 April 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judge: Peter Kner (Univ. of Georgia).

Ana Sofia Tuttle (1st Place), Rockdale Magnet School
Project: Optimization of Solar Cells using Electrospun ZNO Nanofibers


Samuel Eppstein (2nd Place), North Atlanta High School
Project: LEDS vs. Incandescent Light Bulbs

Anirudh Tadanki (3rd Place), Milton High School
Project: A Study of Laser: How Laser Wavelength Affects Measurement Accuracy


Alabama Science and Engineering Fair

Huntsville, Alabama (1 April 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judges: Ron Eng (NASA), Stephen Grande (AOS), James Hadaway (UAH), Amy Kransteuber (US Army), and H. Philip Stahl (NASA).

Matthew Eskridge (1st Place, Senior Div.), Covenant Christian Academy
Project: Zoom into the Future: A Study into the Digital Enhancement of Vision

Shawn Tuteja (2nd Place, Senior Div.), The Altamont School
Project: Developing more efficient models of titanium dioxide dye-sensitized solar cells

Ellen Price (3rd Place, Senior Div.), Jefferson County International Baccalaureate School
Project: Hidden Sounds: The Effect of Cellular Phone Transmission on Human Voice Harmonic Distributions, Year 3

Amelia Greising (3rd Place, Senior Div.), Westminster Christian Academy
Project: Electro-Coagulation vs. UV-Light in Water EV 275 Purification Systems


Matthew Castleberry (1st Place, Junior Div.), Hampton Cove Middle School
Project: Waves or Watts: Who Makes the Most Power?

Eric Bean (2nd Place, Junior Div.), Liberty Middle School
Project: Gauss Rifle

Alex Dillon (3rd Place, Junior Div.), Liberty Middle School
Project: Remote Access Webcam Suite

Harrison Turner (3rd Place, Junior Div.), Clark-Shaw Magnet School
Project: Investigating Your Wi-Fi Foes


San Francisco Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair

San Francisco, California (28 March - 1 April 2011)

Lena Eiger (1st Place), Technology High School
Project: Calculating the Double Slit

Todd G. Porter (2nd Place), Holy Spirit School
Project: Self-Optimizing Solar Tracking System

Christopher Bennett (3rd Place)
Project: Solar Energy


Washington State Science and Engineering Fair

Bremerton, Washington (26-27 March 2011)

Xisen Tian (1st Place), Columbia River High
Project: Organize Photovoltaics II

Jeffrey Nestor (2nd Place) Bellingham HCLP
Project: The Effects of LEDS on Plants

Ethan Flanagan (3rd Place), Bellingham HCLP
Project: Diffraction and Interference



Badger State Science and Engineering Fair

Milwaukee, Wisconsin (26 March 2011)

Annie and Kao Lee Yang, Divine Savior Holy Angels
Project: How Will Thrombin Affect the Expression of mRNA for Growth Factors in Corneal Cells?


North Carolina Science and Engineering Fair

Raleigh, North Carolina (26 March 2011)

Elizabeth Schroder (1st Place), NCSSM
Project: Correlation Between Peel Speed and Intensity of Triboluminescence in Adhesive Tape

Brittany Williams (2nd Place), Emsley A Laney High
Project: Stealth Technology: I can see you...but you can't see me!!!

Forest Beaudet (3rd Place), Madison Early College High
Project: Beyond the Visible

Bay Area Science and Engineering Fair

Hamilton, Ontario, Canada (23-26 March 2011)

Patrick Chong (1st Place), Canadian Martyrs Catholic Elementary School
Project: Light Amplification to Improving Solar Cell Efficiency (LASCE)

Alex Tomala (2nd Place), Immaculate Heart of Mary
Project: Data Transmission Through Optical Technology

Andrea Szafran (3rd Place)
Project: Solar Panels


Chicago Public Schools Science and Engineering Fair

Chicago, Illinois (25 March 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judge: George Magerl (Optical Society of Chicago)


Peter Williamson (1st Place), Lincoln School
Project: The Temperature of Color

Anthonoy Surganov (2nd Place), Lane Tech High
Project: Passive Solar Tracking

Kennedy Graves (3rd Place), Lindblom School
Project: Color vs. Heat Absorption


South Central South Dakota Regional Science Fair

Mitchell, South Dakota (22 March 2011)

Jackie Dethlefsen (1st Place), Stickney High School
Project: Solar Panels


Tye Harris (2nd Place), Plankinton Middle School
Project: Charging Lasers



Justine Hartmann (3rd Place), Armour Middle School
Project: Pinhole Camera


Minnesota State Science and Engineering Fair

Minneapolis, Minnesota (20-22 March 2011)

Addison Weller (1st Place)
Project: Improving Efficiency of Organic Solar Cells using Lead Phthalocyanine

Yinshuo Zhang (2nd Place)
Project: Solar Energy for All: Low-Cost Residential Concentrator Photovoltaic System Design

Leo Henneck (3rd Place)
Project: Catch the Wave (length)


North Suburban Science and Engineering Fair

Chicago, Illinois (19 March 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judge: George Magerl (Optical Society of Chicago).

Elan Ness-Cohn (1st Place), Niles North High School
Project: The Application of Stereo Vision on Projectile Accuracy


Jaime Sergay (2nd Place), Woodlawn Middle School
Project: Effect of Light Intensity on the Rate of a Photochemical Reaction


Western Reserve District 5 Science Day

Akron, Ohio (19 March 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judges: Kent State Univ. SPIE Student Chapter Members

Allison Siragusa (1st Place)
Project: Absorption of Radiant Energy by Different Colors

Kevin Yang (2nd Place)
Project: Measuring Sugar Content in Water Using a Laser Pointer


Northeastern Ohio Science and Engineering Fair

Cleveland, Ohio (14-17 March 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judges: Ali Abdul-Aziz (Cleveland State Univ.), Maryann Fitzmaurice (Case Western Univ.)

Shreyas Tallamraju (1st Place, Solon Middle School
Project: Piezoelectric Panels: A Comparison Between Vibrowind Panels and Traditional Urban Wind Solutions

William Cousino (2nd Place), Lake Ridge Academy
Project: Witricity and Distance

Michael Benevento (3rd Place), St. Raphael School
Project: The Might of the Light

Christopher Allen (Honorable Mention)
Project: Are LED Lightbulbs More Energy Efficient than Common Light Bulbs?

Sam Stroebel (Honorable Mention)
Project: Infrared Spectral Analysis of Erthropoietia

Kyle Schade (Honorable Mention)
Project: Wind Turbine Efficiency

Stepehn Dayneska (Honorable Mention)
Project: Solar Phone Chargers

Austin Cannell (Honorable Mention)
Project: Energy Saving Light Bulbs


7th Annual Southwest Ohio Science and Engineering Expo

Cincinnati, Ohio (12 March 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judges: Ernest Hall (Univ. of Cincinnati), Robert Trusty (Ethicon Endo-Surgery Inc.).

Zachary Huber (1st Place), St. Francis de Sales
Project: Wireless Power

Caroline Johnstone (2nd Place), St. Andrew
Project: Parabolic Solar Cooker

Victoria Detcher (3rd Place), Fairfield Middle School
Project: Lasers


South Suburban Science and Engineering Fair

Chicago, Illinois (12 March 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judge: George Magerl (Optical Society of Chicago)

Jared Marrs (1st Place), Fisher Middle School
Project: Laser Beam Heat

Omotola Bologun (2nd Place), Summit Hill Junior High School
Project: Growing Corn Under a Rainbow


57th North Alabama Regional Science and Engineering Fair

Huntsville, Alabama (12 March 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judges: Thomas Cantey, William Decker, H. Philip Stahl (NASA)


Matthew Eskridge (1st Place, Senior Div.), Covenant Christian Academy
Project: Zoom into the Future

Michelle Rule (2nd Place, Senior Div.)
Project: Measurement of a Change in Luminous Flux of Ionized Noble Gases with Five Different Electrical Power Supplies

Joseph Lee (1st Place, Junior Div.)
Project: It's Light: Part Two

Graham McClelland (2nd Place, Junior Div.)
Project: Positively Radiant!


Hillsborough Regional Science and Engineering Fair

Tampa, Florida (14-15 February 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judges: Patrick Gardner (Draper Lab.), John Jacob (Plasma-Therm), Dennis Killinger (Univ. of South Florida).

Keenan McMahon (1st Place), Freedom High School
Project: Measuring the Intensity and Efficiency of Light Emitting Diodes, Compact Fluorescent, and Incandescent Light Bulbs using a Joly Photometer

Bryanna La Russa (2nd Place), Nativity Catholic School
Project: Most Energy Efficient Lighting

Hannah Keller (3rd Place), Davidsen Middle School
Project: Beating the Burn: Does SPF Affect the Level of UV Protection?






Seminole County Regional Science and Engineering Fair

Sanford, Florida (14 February 2011)
SPIE Volunteer Judge: Carl King (Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems)

Ravi Jindal (1st Place), Seminole High School
Project: The Effect of Cladding Material used in Silicon Waveguide on Light Absorption and Loss

Joseph Durigan (2nd Place)
Project: At a "Snells" Pace

Alison Dukstein and Christine Cole (3rd Place)
Team Project: Pinhole Palooza


USA Science and Engineering Festival