NASA OPSPARC - Mission 2: Winners and Finalist 2019
NASA OPSPARC Winners (Grades 3 to 6): THE GREEN BALANCE
Frank Lamping Elementary School
NASA OPSPARC Winners (Grades 9 to 12): CLEAN DINE DISHES
Jihee, Mia, Sarah & Mirai
Coronado High School / Ed W. Clark High School / West Career and Technical Academy
Henderson / Las Vegas, NV
NASA OPSPARC Final List (Grades 9 to 12)
Daniel, Ethan, Jessica & Zhiying
South High School, Arnold O. Beckman High School, Valley Center High School
Youngbin, Justin & Youngbin
Woodbridge High School
With hydroponic filtration systems, 3D bioprinters and pollution-mitigating masks, innovative students have once again dreamed up creative ways to change the world using NASA technology.
NASA is pleased to announce the winners of the OPTIMUS PRIME Spinoff Promotion and Research Challenge (OPSPARC) 2019.
Just like OPTIMUS PRIME from the TRANSFORMERS franchise, NASA spinoffs start off as one thing but can convert to something else — making these innovations truly MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE. NASA technologies developed for space missions but can be reimagined and put to use in a home, school or business.
“This challenge encourages students to think like entrepreneurs, and they have definitely met that challenge head on,” said Erin Majerowicz, OPSPARC project manager at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “It’s inspiring to see their creativity shine through to ‘Be the Spark.’”
With three distinct missions, OPSPARC 2019 generated international engagement from students in the United States, Canada (excluding Quebec) and the United Kingdom. Challenge participants in Missions 2 and 3 picked from 20 NASA technologies to design their spinoffs.
Mission 1 challenged students of all ages to explore their world in search of spinoffs and submit them to NASA using Adobe Spark, a new OPSPARC collaborator. Morgan Cook from Saint Cloud, Minnesota, won for the month of January, and Justin Choi from Fullerton, California, won for the month of February. More winners will be selected and announced through the end of May 2019.
Mission 2 asked students in grades 3 through 12 to redesign a NASA technology and use it to solve a societal problem, and NASA judges review their submissions to determine a winner.
Samuel Kyong won Mission 2 in the elementary age group for his project involving hydroponics.
Credits: Image courtesy PRIVO
Fifth grader Samuel Kyong from Frank Lamping Elementary School in Henderson, Nevada, won in the elementary age group for his idea to use hydroponics as a filter for environmental volatile organic compounds. His project, called “Green Balance,” leveraged the waste produced by fish to fertilize plants, which filter the air.
Linnea Mitchell, Molly Kernan and Kailyn Kim’s project scored them the winning spot in the middle school age group. Using a sunshield coating from the James Webb Space Telescope, the eighth graders from Valley View Middle School in Snohomish, Washington, proposed to adapt the technology for covering house rooftops in countries with extreme heat.
For the high school age group, eleventh graders Mia Lorenzo and Jihee You and tenth graders Sarah Kim and Mirai Molde modified “Particle Contamination Mitigation Methods” to design dishes that clean themselves. Lorenzo attends Ed W. Clark High School in Las Vegas, Nevada; You attends Coronado High School in Henderson, Nevada; Kim attends West Career and Technical Academy in Las Vegas, Nevada; and Molde is from Las Vegas, Nevada.
Mission 3 gave students grades 7 through 12 the opportunity to take their spinoff ideas to the next level by developing 3D presentations and a marketing plan within a virtual world setting called InWorld OPSPARC.
In the middle school age group, eighth graders Natalie Evans, Zoey Stein, Kenda Eder and Alana Flores from Valley View Middle School in Snohomish, Washington won for their design of a face mask that filters harmful pollution from the air. Their mentor, Jomardee Perkind, supported the team as they adapted “Particle Contamination Mitigation,” a technology from NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia.
Bhoomika Kumar and Vishal Sivamani won Mission 3 in the high school age group for designing a 3D bioprinter, modeled in InWorld OPSPARC.
Credits: Image courtesy National Institute of Aerospace
Twelfth grader Bhoomika Kumar and tenth grader Vishal Sivamani won Mission 3’s high school age group by designing a 3D bioprinter to generate biological tissues and prosthetics. Samantha Warner mentored the team in developing their concept, which was based on another Langley technology, the “NASA 3D Printer.” Kumar and Sivamani are from Coppell High School in Coppell, Texas.
NASA has invited all winners to Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, for a two-day Winner’s Workshop and Awards Ceremony. Students will meet NASA scientists, explore labs and see NASA facilities.
In addition to Adobe Spark, this year’s OPSPARC collaborators include the National Institute of Aerospace, PRIVO, Mad Science, NASA Langley, the Foundation for Technology and Privacy Outreach, HubSpot, Tor Teen, the International Technology and Engineering Educators Association and Ministry of Supply.
OPSPARC 2020 starts in fall 2019 — updates will be announced on the OPSPARC website.
TRANSFORMERS, OPTIMUS PRIME and MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE are trademarks of Hasbro and used with permission (c) 2019 Hasbro. All Rights Reserved.
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.
Last Updated: May 17, 2019
Editor: Rob Garner