The Stockholm Water Foundation and the Stockholm International Water Institute recently announced 18-year-old Ceren Burçak Dag of Nisantasi, Turkey, as the winner of the 2009 Stockholm Junior Water Prize. The young woman won the prize by developing an innovative method for generating energy through piezoelectric pulses from falling rain drops.
"Many young people are concerned about climate change, but few will take action to identify a solution," noted the Stockholm Junior Water Prize Jury in its citation. "Reducing CO2 emissions by developing alternative environment-friendly, renewable energy sources is a specific response to this global problem. This year’s winner had a spark of genius in developing a high-tech solution that used PVDF, a smart material with piezoelectric properties, to transfer the kinetic energy of raindrops into electrical energy."
After the award ceremony, Ceren Bucak Dag explained her hopes for her award-winning project. "We have a new energy source from rain with a piezoelectric effect with this project," she said. "I hope that my work will contribute to the development of the next generation of energy panels where rain, sunand wind are combined."
The jury also awarded Diplomas of Excellence to Emily Elhacham of Israel for her project, Detecting water contamination chemical sensors using metal nanoparticle networks, and Mary Zhao of Canada, for her project, Grasping water: A novel method of inducing precipitation using the Ice Nucleating Protein.
The national and international competitions are open to young people between the age of 15 and 20 who have conducted water-related projects focusing on local, regional, national or global topics of environmental, scientific, social or technological importance. The international winner receives a $5,000 award and a crystal sculpture. As a result of the competitions, thousands of young people around the world become interested in water.
Source: Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI)