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The Madison Record

Six Horizon students advance to Alabama Science and Engineering Fair

MADISON – First, they received honors at their school’s Science Fair. Next, the praise continued at the North Alabama Regional Science and Engineering Fair. Currently, six students at Horizon Elementary School have advanced to the Alabama Science and Engineering Fair for the state contest.

These six Horizon students are Sam Goodwin, Brady Hiserote, Sophia Jerez, Zoe McGee, Matthew Scauzillo and Taylor Vahle.

Sam Goodwin’s project was named “Inflate Gate: Does What’s in the Ball Matter?” “This experiment was conducted to see if using different gases will affect how high a ball bounces,” Goodwin said.

Maybe NFL icon Tom Brady could have benefitted from conclusions of Sam’s project.

Brady Hiserote’s project, “Comparison of House Siding Colors for Energy Efficiency,” compared four colors to determine which ones could save the most energy.

“The painted siding was placed outside in the sun. The surface temperature was measured over time with an infrared thermometer,” Brady said. “Living in a warm climate like Alabama, a lighter color house (like white) would save the most energy.”

“Electromagnets” was the subject that Sophia Jerez researched. “Electromagnets have a big impact on our daily lives — from a tiny motor that makes our phones vibrate to big motors that make our electric cars take us places,” Sophia said.

Sophia concentrated on increasing electromagnetic force without increasing electricity. She used electric cars as a prime example with their huge batteries. “I used paperclips to measure the strength of my homebuilt electromagnets,” Sophia said.

Zoe McGee researched “Bacteria Hiding Under the Surface in our Homes.” “My experiment tested the amount of bacteria that lives on three common household items: a shoe, piano keys and a cell phone case,” Zoe said.

Zoe experimented with cleaning products that cleaned bacteria best. The results showed shoes she wears to school had the most bacteria, which grew quickly. Piano keys came in second for bacteria, but it grew slower. “Surprisingly, the cell phone case had very little bacteria,” Zoe said.

Matthew Scauzillo explored “Is Aerodynamic Twist More Efficient?” to determine if aerodynamic-twisted fan blades were more efficient than straight/fixed-pitch blades. He recorded efficiency by measuring the amount of air moved and how much noise the blades generated when moving air (turbulence).

“My Dad helped me produce the test fans using a CAD program and then 3D printing each design. We chose a four-bladed fan design with a 200-mm diameter that would fit on the motor of one of my fans in my collection. We made a makeshift wind tunnel and funneled air through an anemometer,” Matthew said.

Taylor Vahle tested for the “Best Launch Angle” to identify the method for optimum launch distance. He determined that the right angle is critical. “In this experiment, I built a catapult and launched a beanbag at different launching angles,” Taylor said.

After testing the catapult, Taylor found that a launching angle of 50 degrees was the best setting for the beanbag.

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