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THE FUTURE’S BRIGHT, THE FUTURE’S… GREEN!

This year’s National Science + Engineering Competition welcomed a record number of environmentally-friendly themed entries and is now open for entries to the 2016-17 competition.

The annual contest, organised by the British Science Association, was open to pupils aged between 11-18 who had completed a project or activity in any field of science, technology, engineering or maths.

Thousands of children from across the UK entered the competition, with a total of 228 projects being shortlisted for the finals.

Of these, 47 entries were “green” or socially-minded projects ranging from an eco-friendly classroom design to solar-powered street lighting for areas prone to natural disasters.

Other projects included a lamp designed to help dyslexic pupils, educational smartphone apps and a self-charging hearing aid.

The 2016 winners were announced at this year’s Big Bang Fair at the NEC in Birmingham –  the largest celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) for young people in the UK.

Rogan McGilp, 16, Stuart Chau, 17, Ethan Dunbar Baker, 14, were named UK Young Engineers of the Year for building a hot rod car from scratch for Rogan’s disabled brother, David, who has Down’s Syndrome.

Roxanne El-Hady, 17, was named UK Young Scientist of the Year for her investigation into climate change in South Wales.

The four-day event is aimed at inspiring young people to pursue careers in science by offering access to careers information, resources and activities.

This year’s event also offered experiences in virtual reality, medicine, marine biology, film and TV, space exploration, explosive chemistry, crime-solving and computer coding.

One of the award’s previous winners went on to become the youngest ever entrepreneur to appear on BBC’s Dragon’s Den and feature in the Sport England #LikeAGirl campaign.

Paul Jackson, Chief Executive of EngineeringUK which organises The Big Bang Fair, said: “The winners have been rightly recognised as some of the brightest sparks in the country.

“Their innovative thinking and fresh ideas stood out to the judges. They are not just prize winners, but inspirational stories for school children across the country.

“It’s easy to see why these ideas stood out to the judges but all the finalists are worthy of mention – not only for their exciting new ideas but for showcasing them to crowds of people at the Fair. This glimpse into the minds of the scientists and inventors of tomorrow promises great things for the future.”

For more information about the National Science + Engineering Competition and how to apply, visit: www.nsecuk.org

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