Siemens Science Competition Winners

Photo of Siemens Science Competition Winners Photo of Siemens Science Competition Winners and Staff

Six South High School students have been named Semifinalists in the 2017 Siemens Competition in Math, Science, and Technology, one of the most prestigious student competitions in the science community. They are: Shao Chen, Kimberly Lu, Cindy Wang, Ethan Wang, Michelle Xing, and Ann Zhang. Science research teachers/advisors at South High are Dr. Carol Hersh, Nicole Spinelli, and Dr. James Truglio. Following are the winning students, the names of their projects, and brief project summaries. Summaries were provided by the science research teachers.

Shao Chen - Shao's project is "The Effect of the OAM of Light on the Spin Polarization of the Electrons in Gallium Arsenide at RT." This project focused on a property of electrons called spin in order to see if the spin state of electrons could be changed using light. The eventual goal would be to take advantage of changes in electron spin states in computer processing.

Kimberly Lu - Kimberly worked on "Establishment and Characterization of Topotecan Resistant NCI-H460/TPT10 Cells." A cancer cell line that is resistant to a chemotherapy drug, topotecan, was created in order to study the mechanisms by which cancer cells become resistant to multiple chemotherapy drugs. This cell line is a potentially useful tool for the study of resistance to chemotherapy agents, as well as for drug testing.

Cindy Wang - Cindy's project is "Observation of the Chiral Magnetic Effect in the Quark-Gluon Plasma Produced in Au+Au Collisions at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider." Studies of the matter that are generated during collisions of heavy ions shed light on interactions between fundamental particles that make up all matter. In this study, a particular phenomenon, the chiral magnetic effect, that had been postulated by theory but not definitively seen before, was observed.

Ethan Wang - Ethan worked on a team project, "Artemisinin and Halofuginone as Balanced Regulators of Oncogenic Signaling Pathways for Potential in Colorectal Cancer Treatment." This study focused on the potential for Halofuginone and Artemisinin, compounds from two relatively inexpensive herbs, to be used as novel colorectal cancer treatments.

Michelle Xing - Michelle's project is "Direct Functionalization of Algal Nanocellulose to Enhance Biosorption for Lead (II) Remediation." Pollution of water with lead and other metals is a serious problem worldwide. Chemical treatments of algae were carried out in order to create nanocellulose, which was then shown to be able to absorb lead ions from water.

Ann Zhang - Ann also worked on a team project, "Cloud Mode Anomaly Detection in the Cimel Sunphotometer Using Machine Learning Algorithms." In order to develop good climate models, daily measurements of the atmosphere are made. In this study, certain programming tools were examined to determine if they were able to detect anomalies in the data, which could lead to improvements in the data-collection process.

More about the Competition - From over 1,860 projects submitted for consideration in this year's Competition, 491 were selected as Semifinalists. The Siemens Competition was launched by the Siemens Foundation in 1999 to promote excellence by encouraging students to undertake projects, working individually or in teams, to foster intensive research. The Siemens Foundation partners with these colleges and universities: California Institute of Technology, Carnegie Mellon University, George Washington University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Notre Dame, and University of Texas at Austin.