RBHS students named Siemens Competition regional finalists


These Bruins are the only four students from Missouri named 2012 Siemens Competition Regional Finalists. From left, Raj Satpathy, Nidhi Khurana, Katelyn Race, and Atreyo Ghosh. Photo by Jacqueline LeBlanc

Manal Salim

These Bruins are the only four students from Missouri named 2012 Siemens Competition Regional Finalists. From left, Raj Satpathy, Nidhi Khurana, Katelyn Race and Atreyo Ghosh. Photo by Jacqueline LeBlanc
On Oct.19, the Siemens Foundation announced the regional finalists and semifinalists of the Siemens Competition in Math, Science and Technology. This competition strives to uncover the “brightest high school minds in contention for the nation’s most coveted teen science prize,” according to http://www.siemens-foundation.org. The four Missouri finalists are all RBHS students, seniors Nidhi Khurana, Katelyn Race, Raj Satpathy and Atreyo Ghosh.
The Siemens Competition, administered by The College Board, allows students like Khurana, Race, Satpathy and Ghosh to challenge themselves through science research projects they complete in high school.
Race, who partnered with Ghosh for this competition, created chitosan beads from the shells of crustaceans, impregnated with iron oxide. When water runs through a set of these beads, the heavy metal contamination will be pulled out of the water.
“The practical use of this would be in third world countries, or countries that just have pollution problems,” Race said. “They would be able to install tubes of these beads in their homes and run their water through it, so that then they would be able to drink their water.”
For their research project, Khurana and Satpathy focused on bio-medical imaging technology. Instead of using the exceedingly expensive sensor ray typically used to take images in the bio-medical field, Khurana and Satapathy found they didn’t have to look very far to achieve a similar imaging result, spending a mere $100.
“What we did was we used a normal barcode scanner you would see at a grocery store, to check out groceries,” Khurana said. “We were able to acquire an actual image of a tumor, a finger, a strawberry and a metal block. We were actually able to see the inside parts of it.”
Regardless of the fact that Race, Khurana, Ghosh, and Satpathy were all able to discover innovative and unique scientific research, none were expecting to receive such prestigious recognition.
“It was awesome because we weren’t expecting it, I don’t think either team was,” Race said. “I mean it’s a really big competition, and you never expect to get in that top rank. It’s just a really big surprise.”
Both groups will head to the University of Notre Dame Nov. 8-11, 2012 to compete for a spot in the national competition. Through the Siemens Competition, students have an opportunity to achieve national recognition, and the national winners receive scholarships ranging from $10,000 to $100,000.
The press conference and award presentations for the Siemens Competition will be shown live via webcast on Tuesday Dec. 4 at 9:30 am at www.siemens-foundation.org.

By Manal Salim, Anna Wright and Jacqueline LeBlanc