‘Making a Difference’ Part of the Prize for SPIE Winners at Intel Science, Engineering Fair

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Winners of Special Awards sponsored by SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, during the 2016 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair said their prizes offer support for continuing work that will make a positive difference in the world. The fair, held this year in Phoenix in mid-May, drew nearly 2,000 students in grades 9 through 12 or equivalent from around the world.

SPIE presented Special Awards for photonics-related projects at the 2016 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.

SPIE presented Special Awards for photonics-related projects at the 2016 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.

The award from SPIE will serve as encouragement to continue the work and always try to make a difference.

The opportunity to work toward a future that makes a difference was part of the prize package for student winners of Special Awards sponsored by SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, during the 2016 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF).

The Intel ISEF, held this year in Phoenix in mid-May, drew nearly 2,000 students in grades 9 through 12 or equivalent from around the world. Each won the right to attend the Intel ISEF by successfully competing in regional affiliated science fairs.

In addition to fair-wide prizes, Special Awards in various categories are made each year by SPIE and other organizations. Volunteers serving as judges for this year’s SPIE prizes were Shahab Chitchian (lead judge) of Intel Corp., George Che of Arizona State University, and Mario Paceco of Intel Corp.

SPIE Past President Bill Arnold of ASML USA presented Special Awards on behalf of the Society, for projects detailing photonics applications in sustainable energy and lighting, cybersecurity, and agricultural management.

"ISEF is a high-energy event which attracts many of the best and brightest science students still in high school from around the world," Arnold said. "It is truly awe-inspiring to meet these young people, who will be the leaders in technology tomorrow. We predict many of them will go far in life based on their already considerable achievements to date. The best of luck to them!"

SPIE Special Awards went to:

  • Cheng-Pei Lin of Taipei First Girls High School, Taiwan, won first place, with a prize of $2,000. Her project was “UV-Light-Sensitive Transparent Organic Solar Cells.”
  • Second-place winners were Fabiane Kuhn and Guilherme de Oliveira Ramos of Fundação Escola Técnica Liberato Salzano Vieira da Cunha, Brazil, receiving a $1,500 prize. The team’s project was “Time-Domain Reflectometry Applied to Irrigation Control.”
  • Third-place, with a $1,000 prize, was awarded to Jeremiah Pate of BASIS Oro Valley School (Arizona), USA, for “Security at the Speed of Light: Countering Cyberattacks via Novel On-Chip Photonic Protocols.”
  • The fourth-place award, with a $500 prize, went to Ilke Adalιoglu and Cemil Gorkem Tamer of Takev Science High School, Turkey. Their project was “Characterization of Blue Fluorescent OLED and Seven Segment Display Action.”

Student participants said they found the experience to be extremely valuable.

Kuhn and Ramos stressed the importance of the award in encouraging and enabling them to continue their efforts.

“The award from SPIE will serve as encouragement to continue the work and always try to make a difference,” Ramos said.

They joined other students in expressing appreciation for the opportunity as well.

“The fair was the best time of my life —it's wonderful to have our work recognized,” Kuhn said.

About SPIE

SPIE is the international society for optics and photonics, an educational not-for-profit organization founded in 1955 to advance light-based science, engineering, and technology. The Society serves nearly 264,000 constituents from approximately 166 countries, offering conferences and their published proceedings, continuing education, books, journals, and the SPIE Digital Library. In 2015, SPIE provided more than $5.2 million in support of education and outreach programs. http://www.spie.org

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Amy Nelson
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