Young scientists win big at Eskom Expo International Science Fair

The 2019 Eskom Expo International Science Fair (ISF) came to a life-changing conclusion, with a number of upcoming young scientists winning bursaries to further their education, while others won massive cash prizes at the Grand Awards Ceremony.

The fair was held at the Birchwood Hotel and Conference Centre in Boksburg, and brought together the brightest young scientists from across South Africa and various countries around the world.

Top performing pupils at the fair were awarded prizes in the form of bursaries sponsored by Eskom, Siemens, the University of Pretoria, the University of the Witwatersrand and Babcock to study degrees and courses in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

The top senior Eskom Expo ISF 2019 scientist, wining a R75 000 cash prize was: Iqra Faki from Star College Cape Town Sybrand Park Campus for the project “Fractal Exploration: The 3-dimensional Koch snowflake”.  The aim of the project was to examine mathematical trends and noticeable properties for the surface area and volume of the three-dimensional Koch snowflake. It is mathematically attainable, by developing general formulae and graphical representations, to conclude significant trends for the surface area and volume of the three-dimensional Koch snowflake (in accordance with fixed measurements of the initial pyramid). Faki was also awarded the Meiring Naude Award for the most inspiring project.

The top junior Eskom Expo ISF 2019 scientist, wining a R50 000 cash prize was: Abigail Bloem from Eunice Secondary School in Bloemfontein aims to address your traffic woes with a renewable energy system that intends to ensure 100% up-time of traffic lights, and a fault detection system that reports faults instantly so that technicians are made aware of problems.

Eskom Expo Executive Director, Parthy Chetty said: “It is very inspiring to see such brilliance from young learners of South Africa. The best presented project at ISF 2019 was a junior project, which is very encouraging to see these young scientists taking their passion for science to the next level. There were many more gold medals attained this year which also indicates that the quality of regional science fairs across the country has improved.”

Laptops, other cash prizes as well as the coveted chance to represent South Africa at prominent international science fairs in the United States, China, Taiwan, Turkey, Zambia and Kenya were also awarded to deserving learners with the help of various long-standing sponsors of the Eskom Expo.

Eskom General Manager of Risk and Sustainability, Andrew Etzinger said Eskom Expo challenges young scientists to think logically and to be creative and innovative when addressing issues and problems faced in their own communities.

“Eskom supports scientific and engineering innovations by learners who are becoming role models to their peers and finding resolutions to contemporary problems. We also hope to broaden their scientific horizons and encourage them to pursue careers in the sciences by igniting a passion for innovation in science, technology, engineering and mathematics,” said Etzinger.

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