‘Corrosin Explosion’ takes first at the eCYBERMISSION state competition

A team of eighth graders from St. Joseph School in Lake Orion was among 60 regional finalists in the 14th annual eCYBERMISSION competition, one of several science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) initiatives offered by the U.S. Army Educational Outreach Program.
Eighth graders Payton Bero, Charlie Haynes, Daniel Heuschele and Alex Weber (calling themselves “Corrosion Explosion”) won first in the state and qualified for the regional competition. They did not advance to the next level.
This group tested the durability of four different types of paints to determine which would prevent corrosion on steel. They found that the best paint was the one used for bridges. The students concluded that bridges and overpasses should be maintained better to prevent corrosion and save money.
The students worked with team advisor Sue Tyner, a science teacher at St. Joseph School. As a regional finalist team, each student will receive $2,000 in U.S. savings bonds, valued at maturity.
Students worked in groups of three or four and proposed a solution to real-world problems in their local communities. St. Joseph’s middle school students have participated in eCYBERMISSION since the 2010-2011 year.
Other St. Joseph students also won honors. Second place winners in the state were St. Joseph eighth graders Madison Paulus, Rachel Falkowski, Sam Walker, and Lauren Koenig. Their group attempted to rid fruits and vegetables of pesticides using an organic spray from the grocery store. They found that apples and potatoes tested negative for the spray after washing and strawberries, celeries and grapes tested positive because the pesticide had absorbed into the fruit.
The students said they learned it was important to prevent use of pesticides for fruits and vegetables.
Seventh graders Peter Barachkov, Ben Keele, Alex Haynes and Blake Hazelton analyzed the effects of different exercises on heart rates. They won second in the state.
Sponsored by the U.S. Army and administered by the National Science Teachers Association, the competition is designed to inspire student interested in STEM. In the next round, judges consisting of U.S. Army scientists and engineers, educators and STEM professionals advance 20 regional winners based on criteria including innovative ideas and a four-minute question-and-answer session with the regional finalist teams.
The top 20 regional winning teams will advance as national finalists to the annual National Judging and Educational Event, an all-expenses paid trip from June 20-24 in the Washington, D.C. area.

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