Romanian teenager bags first place in Intel ISEF 2013

May 22, 2013

Ionut Budisteanu, 19, of Romania bagged the first place for using artificial intelligence to create a viable model for a low-cost, self-driving car at this year’s Intel International Science and Engineering Fair held in Phoenix, Arizona from May 12 to May 17.

Ionut said his research addresses a major global issue of car accidents caused due to driver error. With 3-D radar and mounted cameras, Ionut created a feasible design for an autonomously controlled car that could detect traffic lanes and curbs, along with the real-time position of the car at a reasonable cost of US$ 4000. He received the Gordon E. Moore Award of US$ 75,000, named in honor of the Intel co-founder and fellow scientist.

From India, Aishwarya Ashok and Nayana Koravatti from Amrita Vidyalayam, Davangere bagged the fourth place in the mathematical sciences: geometry category and were awarded US$ 500 for their project entitled ‘dissection of square into ‘N’ congruent squares’. Khanak Bhargava and Ishani Goomer from Amity International School, Mayur Vihar were winners of the third award in the biochemistry category and received US$ 1,000 for their project entitled ‘testing kit to distinguish between artificially and naturally ripened fruits’. Akshat Boobna from Amity International School, Saket received an honourable mention from the Acoustical Society of America in the computer science: materials and bioengineering category for his project entitled ‘finding best speaker position using new algorithms to determine acoustic properties of a room’.

Team India was welcomed back by Rahul Gandhi and Debjani Ghosh, managing director, Sales and Marketing Group, Intel South Asia, on May 21. Gandhi said he would write to the HRD minister asking him to give a letter of recommendation to the children who represented the country at ISEF for the purpose of higher education.

Eesha Khare, 18, of Saratoga, California received the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award of US$ 50,000 for developing an energy-efficient storage device that fits inside cell phone batteries, allowing them to fully charge within 20-30 seconds. Eesha’s invention also has potential applications for car batteries.

Henry Lin, 17, of Shreveport, Los Angeles also received the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award of US$ 50,000. By simulating thousands of clusters of galaxies, Henry has provided scientists with valuable new data, allowing them to better understand the mysteries of astrophysics: dark matter, dark energy and the balance of heating and cooling in the universe’s most massive objects.

This year, approximately 1,600 young scientists from 433 affiliate fairs in more than 70 countries, regions and territories were chosen to compete in the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. In addition to the winners mentioned above, more than 500 finalists received awards and prizes for their innovative research. Awards included 17 “Best of Category” winners who received a cash prize of US$ 5,000 each. The Intel Foundation also awarded US$ 1,000 grant to each winner’s school and to the affiliated fair they represent.

Society for Science & the Public, a nonprofit membership organization dedicated to public engagement in scientific research and education, has owned and administered the International Science and Engineering Fair since its inception in 1950.

Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) is a world leader in computing innovation. The company designs and builds the essential technologies that serve as the foundation for the world’s computing devices.

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