2002-2003 Regional & National Awards
First Place Winner at the February 2003 WV Regional JSHS:
Kellen Calinger, Mount de Chantal Visitation Academy, Wheeling
CARBON EXCHANGE DYNAMICS: CARBON FLUX THROUGH BIOGEOCHEMICAL COMPONENTS OF A TEMPERATE DECIDUOUS FOREST.
This research studied carbon dynamics in a temperate deciduous forest and designed an in-lab procedure that would model the soil and biomass components. Sugar maple saplings were grown in elevated and ambient [CO2]. Soil [carbonate] at two depths and sapling height and circumference growth were measured. Surface water carbonates were measured to assess changes in the hydrologic component. The atmospheric [CO2] was measured at rural and industrialized sites and an industrial site chosen based on wind patterns. All measurements were recorded over three seasons to determine seasonal variations.
Soils of plants grown in CO2-enrichment display higher [carbonate]. Soil and water carbonates reflected seasonal changes that correlated with vegetative changes. The rural site had lower [CO2] than either industrialized site and the site eastward of the power plant had higher concentrations than the power plant site. Biogeochemical components of a temperate forest can sequester more carbon under elevated [CO2]. This carbon fluxes through the ecosystem; levels vary with changes in photosynthesis.
Future research will measure soil-PCO2 and assess the effects of elevated CO2 on leaf nitrates.
Second Place (an expenses-paid trip to present at the National JSHS in
Sarah Gutman, Mount de Chantal Visitation Academy, Wheeling
THE EFFECTS OF SPRAY COATED FIBER REINFORCEMENT ON THE COMPRESSIVE STRENGTH OF CONCRETE: A 3RD YEAR STUDY
The experiment studied the effects of spray coated fiber reinforcement on the compressive strength of concrete. After hypothesizing coated fiber reinforcement increase concrete strength, the nine coatings – hair spray, Elmer’s, Weldbond, flour paste, Acryl 60, starch, lacquer, rosin, and spray adhesive – were tested.
For each test, the gravel, sand, and cement were weighed individually. The fiber was coated in a spray chamber and allowed to dry for one hour. After the dry components were placed in the mixer, water with air entraining was added. The finished concrete was put into molds, and cured to state standards. Each sample was tested in a hydraulic press at a state certified lab. In Phase II, the procedure was repeated on the top five coatings using half the amount.The coatings increased and decreased the strength of the concrete. From least to greatest, the average strength of each coating was: rosin, Acryl 60, hair spray, control, lacquer, Elmer’s, Weldbond, and starch. In Phase II, all except starch had a higher strength than in Phase I, indicating possible commercial application.
The remaining students who were eligible for expenses paid trips to attend the National Junior Science and Humanities Symposium are:
Tawfiq Khoury (Prolongation of shelf life of produce by alternate application of ozone and CO2, Wheeling Park High School, Wheeling),
Mike Anderson ( Maintaining an Unstable Equilibrium Through the Use of a Fuzzy Logic Controller; University High School, Morgantown), and
Paul Braswell (The Photoelectric Effect- A 2nd Year Study, Hedgesville High School, Hedgesville)
All of the students who participated are commended for the quality of the work they presented.
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