A Taiwanese high school student won a major prize at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in the US on Friday for her discovery of a bacteria that breaks down Styrofoam.
On the eve of the conclusion of the fair in Reno, Nevada, Tseng Yi-ching (曾依晴), a student at National Taichung Girl’s Senior High School in Taichung City, was awarded the top prize in microbiology, a press release issued by the National Taiwan Science Education Center said.
Tseng won the prize for her discovery of a bacteria in the digestive ducts of mealworms that can decompose Styrofoam, which is not biodegradable.
She was also awarded cash prizes by three other sponsors of the fair, totaling about US$10,000.
She will also be offered NT$200,000 by Taiwan’s Ministry of Education, which usually gives this sum to students who win honors at international fairs and competitions, as well as a chance to enter university without having to take the entrance examination.
Six other students from Taiwan also won various prizes at the fair.
They are part of an 11-member team organized by National Taiwan Science Education Center for this year’s fair.
The Intel International Science and Engineering Fair is billed as the world’s largest pre-college science competition. It brings together an estimated 1,600 young scientists from about 50 countries every year.
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