DAYTON — Sarai Combs and James Zbinden left their mark on the Montgomery County Science Day (MCSD) competition by presenting their science projects to a panel of judges.
Combs, a freshman at Wayne High School, presented her biomedical concept of creating a villi barrier (small, finger-like projections that extend into the small intestine) to help reduce surface area in the small intestine which would reduce absorption of glucose into the body. Her inspiration for the idea came out of concern for a friend with diabetes and his need to better control his blood sugar levels.
Zbinden, a seventh grader at Weisenborn Junior High, presented his ideas on using magnets to propel objects that would maximize their velocity and distance. He was inspired by a combination of his interests in magnetic levitation trains, trebuchets, and catapults.
Both students have earned superior ratings at the Huber Heights City Schools District Science Fair, which has qualified them and 17 other Huber Heights students for the West District Science Day on March 17, 2018 at Central State University. Students earning a superior rating at West District Science Day will be eligible to participate in the Ohio State Science Day on May 12, 2018 at Ohio State University.
Both Combs and Zbinden have previous experience at the Ohio State Science Day. Combs participated in 2017 with her project on extreme thermal effects on thermo-chromatic liquid crystals. In 2016, Zbinden presented his project determining if autonomous or manually operated robots were faster when tested on three different courses.
The Montgomery County Science Day and Engineering Fair has more than 300 participants from more than 23 middle, junior high, and high schools. More than 120 professionals in various disciplines from Dayton and the surrounding areas were on hand at the Dayton Convention Center to judge projects in a variety of scientific areas ranging from Behavioral Science to Zoology. At the end of the awards ceremony, two individual students and alternates were chosen to represent Montgomery County at the International Science and Engineering Fair held in Pittsburgh on May 13 – 18, 2018.