In 2009, Collin McAliley from Cocoa Beach Junior/Senior High School and James Brandenburg from Cocoa High School shared top honors at the 11th Annual Dr. Nelson Ying Student Science Competition at the Orlando Science Center.

Typically, the grand prize will only go to one winner, but competition founder Dr. Nelson Ying and the judges panel felt both students were worthy of acclaim. The remaining three finalists all received $1,000 fellowships to continue their research over the next year. Rather than split the grand prize into two, Ying awarded James and Collin equal cash prizes of $5,000 each.

Collin’s entry, “Red Tide Mitigation: Year 5,” nabbed $5,000 and a trophy and cash prizes for his science teacher, Dr. Scott McCord, and his school. His research neutralized toxins in the organism that causes red tide in Florida. By helping to control red tide in Florida, McAliley’s research could save millions of species of marine life plus have positive ramifications for the state’s fishing and tourism industries.

James’s entry, "Post-Process Adaptive Optics," earned cash and a trophy, plus $1,000 for his science teacher, Raul Montes, and $1,000 for his school. His research developed a new optical system and software that makes satellite images and telescope images clearer and more accurate. These results could ultimately help astronomers discover new planets, improve military surveillance or even improve medical imaging.

These amazing research projects garnered the top prize, but were only two of the remarkable entries recognized at last year’s competition. This year is sure to bring out more incredible talent from the Central Florida’s young scientists. The Dr. Nelson Ying Student Science Competition will mark its 12th year in collaboration with the Orlando Science Center, when it begins on April 23, 2010 and concludes on April 25.

2009-OSC-ying-winners

 


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