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Merchiston Pupils win Royal Academy of Engineering Prize in Prestigious Nationwide Competition

Published Monday 15th of April 2013 10:32:30 AM

Four Upper Sixth pupils from Merchiston Castle School are celebrating after receiving the Royal Academy of Engineering Prize at the prestigious National Science & Engineering Competition.
William, Johnny, Ben, August and Matthew reached the finals of the competition at the Big Bang UK Young Scientists & Engineers Fair. They were among 450 innovative young finalists chosen to showcase their work. There were about 20 thousand visitors to the fair over the two days, including the Duke of York and the Prime Minister.
The Academy prize was awarded to the project that demonstrated the best application of engineering principles. William, Johnny, Ben, August and Matthew captured the judges' attention with their research developing and investigating ways to interface a bionic hand to the human body.
Dervilla Mitchell FREng, Director at Arup and chair of the Academy's Awards Committee, presented the team with their prize. As well as receiving £500 and a certificate, William, Johnny, Ben, August and Matthew will also be treated to a VIP tour of the McLaren Technology Centre in Surrey.
During the tour, they will have the chance to experience first-hand the different departments that comprise the McLaren Formula One Team, including; the race team bays, machine shop, composites shop, specialised tooling hall and the onsite wind tunnel.
The tour will also include an overview of the McLaren Production Centre, where the McLaren MP4-12C and P1 super sports cars are manufactured.
Sir John Parker GBE FREng, President of the Royal Academy of Engineering said: "We are delighted to award this prize for the best engineering project at the Big Bang 2013. William, Johnny, Ben, August and Matthew stood out as exceptionally bright young talents and are very deserving of this award. We look forward to taking them to the McLaren Technology Centre where they will be able to go behind the scenes and meet some of their leading engineers."
Sir Roland Jackson, Chief Executive of the British Science Association which organises the National Science and Engineering Competition, said: "This year's winners are an inspiration to others looking to embark on a career in science and engineering. They have all truly impressed the judges and played their own part within the competition to encourage others to explore their own interest in science and engineering.
William, Johnny, Ben, August and Matthew worked hard to get to this year's finals, and we'd encourage others to take part in next year's competition which starts at the next round of Big Bang Near Me Fairs this summer."
The judging panel for the Academy competition included design engineer Krishan Meetoo, polar explorer Jason De Carteret and Academy staff Matthew Harrison and Dominic Nolan.
As well as spending time at the fair speaking to the judges and explaining their project, the pupils also took part in a Guinness book of records event try to set a new world record, attended a live braniac show and met a panel of Nobel prize winners who were discussing their contributions to science.
The Headmaster is delighted for the boys and Head of Science, Mr Nicholls, who oversaw the project, "This is a superb achievement for the boys and for Merchiston. The team should be proud of winning this prestigious national award. Merchiston has a strong tradition in Science, Maths and Electronics and I am delighted that this award demonstrates our continuing excellence in these areas."
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