Winner of the 2013 Weston Youth Innovation Award
The Award Selection Committee is pleased to announce that the recipient of the 2013 Weston Youth Innovation Award is 18-yeard-old Adam Noble of Lakefield, Ontario, for his work developing a biofilter to remove nanosilver from wastewater.
Euglena: The Solution to Nanosilver Pollution
Living near the Trent Waterway, Adam Noble’s curiosity originally led him to wonder about the effects of nanosilver—a common anti-microbial material used in the production of consumer products such as cosmetics, detergents and textiles—on local water supplies. Interested in the potential environmental and health impacts, he began to experiment with methods for detecting silver in wastewater. Through repeated testing Noble discovered that Euglena, a tiny single-celled organism, could not only detect the nanosilver but retrieve it as well.
After hundreds of hours spent in the lab, Noble has built a prototype Euglena biofilter to remove the nanosilver from water. "My research project has grown and developed in ways that I never could have imagined," explains Noble.
"We are very impressed by Adam’s imagination and dedication to his work," says Dr. Hooley McLaughlin, Vice President of Science Experience and Chief Science Officer at the Ontario Science Centre. "We are sure that we will be seeing much more from Adam in the future as he continues to pursue his career as an engaged scientist."
View the press release.
Finalists for 2013 Weston Youth Innovation Award included
- Jessie MacAlpine (Woodstock, Ontario), combined garlic mustard and coffee grinds to produce an environmentally friendly and effective herbicide.
- Jamil Merali (Corbeil, Ontario), built a haptic shoe with GPS receiver, motors, and ultrasonic sensors to aid people with various physical and mental challenges.
- Kyle Potts (Barrie, Ontario),developed a method to produce stronger-than-wood panels from agricultural waste.
- Soumya Srinivasan (Ottawa, Ontario), designed a reliable and portable device to prevent drowning.
- Janelle Tam (Waterloo, Ontario), discovered that nano-crystalline cellulose from trees is a powerful anti-oxidant that can be used in food, health care, and cosmetics.
The 2013 Review Panel
- Dr. Hooley McLaughlin, Vice President Science Experience and Chief Science Officer, Ontario Science Centre
- Serena Mitchell, Representative, W. Garfield Weston Foundation
- Dr. Barbara Sherwood Lollar, Professor, Department of Earth Sciences, University of Toronto, Director, Stable Isotope Laboratory, Board Member, Ontario Science Centre
- Dr. Marc Nantel, PhD, P.Phys., Associate Vice-President – Research & Innovation, Niagara College Canada
2012 Weston Youth Innovation Award
Charlotte Donaldson and Megan Smith of Nova Scotia, for their work developing an improved "Universal Spinal Board" to aid in the rescue of victims of spinal injuries.
The Award Selection Committee wishes to recognize Shayla Larson and Adam Noble of Ontario for their work using Euglena cells to test the toxicity of nanosilver in Canada's water systems.
Finalists for 2012 Weston Youth Innovation Award included:
- Rachel Brown and Katie van der Sloot of Alberta for their investigations and community activism related to Triclosan and its role in contributing to the development of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
- The Sentinels (Lego Robotics Team 3663) of Ontario for their work developing a new biomedical device to aid in diabetes management.
- Marshall Zhang of Ontario for his work researching a possible new drug treatment for cystic fibrosis. 2011 Weston Youth Innovation Award.
2011 Weston Youth Innovation Award
Please note that the Weston Youth Innovation Award was not awarded in 2011. After careful deliberation, the Review Panel determined that none of that year's submissions met all the required criteria.
2010 Weston Youth Innovation Award
Kimberly Gulevich of British Columbia, for her work exploring the use of methane capture as a way to provide energy to small rural households that use sewage lagoons. A clean form of energy and a renewable resource, methane could potentially help reduce the carbon footprint of these households.
The Award Selection Committee recognized Meredith Drieseberg and Kathleen Skyvington for iCCOMMIT, a youth movement to fight climate change.
Finalists for 2010 Weston Youth Innovation Award included:
- Sophia Coulter English and Gillian Walczak for "The Perfect Plastic", a project to develop bio-degradable plastic from simple household products.
- Katrine Masters and Cynthya Peloquin for "Suivi de population de poissons dans le ruisseau Cacouna", a project to assess the health and outcome of a trout-stocking program in Drummondville, Quebec.
2009 Weston Youth Innovation Award
Eden Full of Alberta, for her work with Dynamic Photovoltaics, a passive solar tracker that moves panels towards the sun using inexpensive, environmentally-safe materials that are commonly found in developing countries and elsewhere. The device maximizes the efficiency of solar panels by having them track the sun during the course of the day, and can be easily maintained and repaired with simple instructions.
Finalists for 2009 Weston Youth Innovation Award included:
- Albert Hu, founder of the Northern Secondary Robotic Innovation Team (Toronto, ON).
- Courtney Marshall, Adam Mitchell and Jake Mitchell (Napanee, ON), with the Solar Stirling Engine Project.
- Meredith Drieseberg, Azra Shirji and Meagan McKeen (Oakville, ON) with iCCOMMIT, a youth movement to fight climate change.
The Weston Youth Innovation Award is generously supported by The W. Garfield Weston Foundation and is administered by the Ontario Science Centre.