We use cookies to give you the best personal experience on our website. If you continue to use our site without changing your cookie settings, you agree we may place these cookies on your device. You can change your cookie settings at any time but if you do , you may lose some functionality on our website . More information can be found in our privacy policy.
Please provide more information.
Stylus no longer supports Internet Explorer 7, 8 or 9. Please upgrade to IE 11, Chrome, Safari, Firefox or Edge. This will ensure you have the best possible experience on the site.
Brief Published: 29 May 2013

Intel’s International Science Fair: Winners


Low-cost, self-driving cars, high-speed phone chargers and simulated galaxies were among the winning ideas to emerge from US computer-chip maker Intel’s International Science and Engineering Fair, held last week in Phoenix, Arizona.

The competition – the world’s largest high-school science research contest – awarded the top prize of $75,000 to 19-year-old Romanian student Ionut Budisteanu, for using artificial intelligence to create a viable model for a low-cost, self-driving car. The $4,000 vehicle can detect traffic lanes and curbs, along with the real-time position of the car.

Budisteanu based his research on internet giant Google’s ongoing project to develop a self-driving car (read more in Autonomous Autos), calculating that the most expensive component in Google’s car was the high-resolution 3D radar system used to orientate the car in its surroundings. He replaced this system with webcams and a low-resolution radar, which worked perfectly in 47 out of 50 simulations.

Californian teenager Eesha Khare won the $50,000 runner-up prize for her supercharger device that could fit into a mobile phone battery, allowing it to charge fully within 30 seconds. Khare said she was responding to the need for more efficient energy-storage technology to power portable electronics, and plans to continue her research when she begins her studies at Harvard University later this year.

Henry Lin, a 17-year-old from Louisiana, also won the runner-up prize for simulating thousands of galaxy clusters – providing scientists with valuable new data on the workings of the universe.

Intel ISEF 2013