AT THE Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF) held in Pittsburgh, Peter Horváth, a student at the Ján Chalupka gymnázium in Brezno, took third place and a prize of $1,000 in the chemistry category for his innovative method to detect the concentration of cadmium, a toxic metal, in water such as that in sewerage systems.
The ISEF event is among the largest global competitions for young scientists and has been organised since 1950 by Society for Science & the Public, an NGO, with financial sponsorship by Intel, an international producer of computer chips. In this year’s competition, 1,500 students from secondary schools in 77 countries competed for awards and grants totalling $3 million.
Slovakia’s representatives at the competition are chosen by the Amavet association during the Festival of Science and Technology, as well as via the competition Scientia Pro Futuro sponsored by Mladí vedci Slovenska (Young Scientists of Slovakia), the association that nominated Horváth to go to Pittsburgh. Horváth also won a gold medal at the Genius Olympiad competition in 2011, according to e-trend, the website of the Trend economic weekly.
The grand champion at Intel ISEF 2012 was Jack Adracka, aged 15, from Maryland in the USA for his discovery of a new method to detect pancreatic cancer. He developed a simple sensor to test blood or urine for the presence of an early stage of pancreatic cancer. His sensor has an accuracy rate of 90 percent and his method is 28-times faster and cheaper and 100-times more sensitive than the currently-used method. Adracka received the Gordon E. Moore award, named in honour of the co-founder and former CEO of Intel, which came with a prize of $75,000.