Pupils make their mark with innovations
They competed against young scientists from across South Africa and countries worldwide in a competition to create innovative scientific and engineering projects which aimed to solve issues experienced in their communities and globally.
Pinky Jiyane, from Ongoye Secondary School outside Richards Bay, was named the Siemens Grand Prize winner for her “Ultra Smart Meter” project.
She was one of three pupils to receive awards in the Best Energy Project category.
Pinky said the aim of her project was to introduce a new way of loading electricity.
“It also introduces a new way of checking the balance left in your meter. Having the smart meter will be exactly like having a meter keyboard in your pocket wherever you are,” said Pinky.
As part of her prize, she will attend a three-and-a-half-year international technical apprenticeship at Siemens in Berlin.
She will then be placed with the company.
Sabine Dall’Omo, the Siemens chief executive for Southern and Eastern Africa, said the company had a long-standing partnership with the Eskom Science Expo and affirmed the group’s commitment to the development of young, African minds in the science, technology, engineering and maths fields.
“Siemens, as a multinational company, is uniquely positioned to provide opportunities that promote both international and multicultural exposure within the business while advancing the skills the company would require in the future,” Dall’Omo said.
Maluta Gcabashe, from HP Ngwenya Primary School in Chesterville, received the award for the Best Development Project for her low-dust, environmentally-friendly chalk.
The purpose of the project was to engineer chalk that creates less dust than regular chalk used by teachers in classrooms.
“The reason for this is that most teachers have a problem with getting their hands dirty while they write on the board. Chalk dust is also not healthy to breathe in,” she explained.
Gcabashe said she would like the chalk to be produced locally using recycled and natural materials.