SLU-Madrid Honors Spanish High School Students for Research in Microbiology and Sensory Substitution Technology
Judges of SLU-Madrid's National Science and Technology Prize announced the winners of the seventh annual award.
Students from high schools in Madrid, Catalonia, Galicia, Valencia, the Balearic Islands and Castile and León submitted a total of 42 projects to the competition. Topics included engineering and technology, health sciences, chemistry, biology, earth sciences and computer science.
Based on the assessment criteria of originality, creativity, applicability and overall presentation, the judges panel selected the the following projects as this year's winners. Winners will present their projects at a ceremony in San Ignacio Hall at a future date.
First Prize (1000€): HandVision: desarrollo de un dispositivo de sustitución sensorial para invidentes
(HandVision: Development of a Sensory Substitution Device for the Blind)
Submitted by Clara Fuertes Novillo from IES Pintor Antonio López (Tres Cantos, Madrid), this project presents the development of a device to assist blind people with certain sensory functions, such as recognizing obstacles, colors and shapes. The student designed both the hardware and software for the device, and tested its experimental functionality.
Judges were impressed by the complexity of the techniques used and the thoroughness of the experiment, which was also exceptionally well-documented and organized.
Second Prize (500€): BBB Shuttles as a Novel Strategy to Tackle Alzheimer’s Disease
Raquel Novel Ortega from the Colegio SIL (Barcelona, Catalonia) conducted a detailed
study of the molecular hallmarks of Alzheimer ’s disease and carried out the synthesis
of a peptide that has the potential to inhibit beta-amyloide protein aggregation and
act as a new drug-delivery method across the blood-brain barrier (BBB).
The judges panel valued the complex experimental procedure, which included solid-phase peptide synthesis (SPPS) and high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) to synthesize and purify the peptide, as well as the coupling of brain endothelial cell cultures with fluorescent microscopy and fluorometry to demonstrate transport across the BBB by the peptide.
Due to the extraordinary quality of the projects submitted to the competition this year, the judges extended honorable mentions to the following eight finalists:
- “Machine learning y huella dactilar para el diagnóstico de la enfermedad celíaca”
(Machine Learning and Fingerprinting for the Diagnosis of Celiac Disease)
Submitted by Héctor Vaquero del Pino of IES Margarita Salas (Majadahonda, Madrid)
- “Diseño de un prototipo monitorizador climatológico aplicado a IOT”
(Design of a Prototype for Climatological Monitoring Applied to IOT)
Submitted by Ulysses de Aguilar Gudmundsson of IES Pintor Antonio López (Tres Cantos, Madrid)
- “Evaluación de la capacidad del carbón activo magnetizado para absorber sustancias
(Evaluation of the Capacity of Active Magnetized Carbon to Absorb Potentially Toxic Substances)
Submitted by Raquel Cancela Rodríguez, María Costa Alonso and Mauro Carballo Fernández of Instituto Plurilingüe Rosalía De Castro (Santiago de Compostela, Galicia)
- “Estudio de la distribución de los puntos de carga de vehículos eléctricos en la
Comunidad de Madrid mediante diagramas de Voronoi”
(Study of the Distribution of Chargers for Electric Vehicles in the Madrid Province Using Voronoi Diagrams)
Submitted by David González-Calatayud Heras of IES Pintor Antonio López (Tres Cantos, Madrid)
- “Auditoría energética Del IES Prado de Santo Domingo De Alcorcón”
(Energy audit of IES Prado de Santo Domino de Alcorcón)
Submitted by María Jiménez Corrochano of IES Prado de Santo Domingo (Alcorcón, Madrid)
- “Luthiers: ¿Matemáticos o artesanos?”
(Luthiers: ¿Mathemeticians or Artists?)
Submitted by Alba González González of IES Pintor Antonio López (Tres Cantos, Madrid)
- “La vida de una plaqueta: Biogénesis y estudio de la activación plaquetaria”
(The Life of a Platelet: Biogenesis and the Study of Platelet Activation)
Submitted by Irene Aguado Rubio of IES Margarita Salas (Majadahonda, Madrid)
- “Estudio de la estabilidad de la glucopiranosa mediante cálculos de estructura electrónica”
(Study of the Stability of Glucopryanose Via Electronic Stability Calculations)
Submitted by Alba Sara López Sánchez of IES Pintor Antonio López (Tres Cantos, Madrid)
Among the 10 finalists were five projects (including the first prize winner) submitted by students who attend IES Pintor Antonio López in Tres Cantos (Madrid). Jesús Moreno García, mayor of Tres Cantos, organized a virtual ceremony to recognize these five students for their exceptional research projects.
Each of the students presented the basics of their research and spoke about their plans for continuing their education. The three faculty mentors from IES Pintor Antonio López who assisted with these projects, Raul Martín, Irene Tuset and Javier Guillén Fernñandez, also offered words of praise to the students. At the end of the ceremony, the Council Woman for Education in Tres Cantos, Marisa Peña, revealed the city’s plans to create a space to promote scientific research among students. Associate Dean of Sciences and Engineering Taieb Gasmi, Ph.D., expressed SLU-Madrid’s enthusiasm for the initiative and a desire to collaborate in the future.
“It was a true honor to award this year’s prizes to these exceptional students," said Francisco Prieto, Ph.D., program director for natural sciences and coordinator of the competition. "The quality of all of the projects submitted was excellent. We extend our congratulations to all participants and their dedicated mentors.”