Science projects get Auckland students experimenting

Auckland students are showcasing their scientific prowess while vying for a range of prizes at this week's NIWA Auckland City Science and Technology Fair.

NIWA biologist and science fair co-ordinator Tracey Burton says she is excited about seeing what New Zealand's future scientists have been thinking about today.

"The enthusiasm these students have for their work is inspiring. Science and technology fairs are all about using scientific methods to solve real problems. Along the way we hope they also see the possibilities a career in science might offer them."

More than 260 projects have been entered in the Auckland City fair this year from students in Years 7-13.

Among topics examined are:

  • How good are child-proof lids on medicine bottles?
  • Do plants grown with different fertilisers affect their taste?
  • What is the best tyre pressure for go-carts to achieve the fastest laps?
  • How does land us affect sediment levels in rivers and streams in the Auckland region?
  • An eco-friendly method to dispose of compostable material into small apartment gardens.

The NIWA Auckland City Science and Technology Fair offers overall prize money of about $8000 in a wide range of categories, with the best exhibit receiving $600 and the runner up $350.

A team of judges, including scientists, educators and industry representatives, will judge the awards which also include prizes for excellence in biology, best use of statistical data, best entomology and the opportunity to be a scientist for a day.

Members of the public can view the students' projects at the Fickling Centre, 546 Mt Albert Rd, Three Kings on Friday, 30 August from 5pm-8pm and on Saturday, 31 August from 10am-5pm.

Prizewinners will be recognised at an official prizegiving ceremony on Monday, 9 September at King's School hall.

NIWA wishes all students entering the fair the very best of luck. NIWA is also a major sponsor of the Manukau, Bay of Plenty, Waikato and Wellington Science and Technology Fairs.

For more information see

Tracey Burton
NIWA science fairs get students thinking about how to use scientific methods to solve real-life problems. [Tracey Burton]