They may only be in third grade, but that hasn’t stopped a few Kenrose Elementary students from catching the eyes of NASA scientists.
The KES trio consisting of Joe Larson, Aarush Tiyyugara and Shawn Kumar has been selected as one of the top 10 finalists for NASA’s Optimus Prime Spinoff Promotion and Research Challenge, and their project has gone to a public vote with the other finalists to determine the winner.
Voting is open from April 24 until May 1 with the winner being announced on May 5. Click here to vote for the Kenrose project. They are team #8.
NASA spinoffs are technologies originally created for space and modified into everyday products used here on Earth-including memory foam, invisible braces and long-distance telecommunications.
The Kenrose trio was inspired to submit a project after learning that bats were dying by flying into the blades of wind turbines.
The three boys wanted to find a way to prevent bat deaths so they researched how bats use ultrasonic waves and echolocation to guide them in flight. They then researched how to create a high frequency area for bats to avoid flying into a turbulent field. Their solution was to use a piezoelectric transducer to produce ultrasonic waves and thereby guide bats away from the wind turbine blades.
After the public choice voting has ended, a panel of NASA Goddard judges will choose the first place winner. Winning teams are invited to NASA Goddard Space Flight Center for a two-day, hands-on workshop with scientists and astronauts.