March 14, 2001
High School Students Take Top Honors At Brookhaven Lab Model Bridge
UPTON, NY - With the top four bridges, Patchogue-Medford High School students were the engineering whiz kids at the 2001 Model Bridge Contest sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory.
Franco (center) and Edward Tremblay (right) took first-place and
third-place honors, while Longwood Junior High School student Kurt
Speilmann (left) won the aesthetic award for the bridge judged most
attractive. Not shown are Aiah Wider, second-place winner; and Yanka Li,
whose bridge took fourth place.
About 300 high
school students from 24 schools in Suffolk County participated in the
contest, with the goal being to build the lightest bridge that supports
the most weight. Franco's winning bridge weighed in at 17.7 grams and
withstood more than 2,700 times its own weight before it broke under the
pressure of a stress tester.
The top three winners received gift certificates in the amounts of $100, $75 and $50, and the aesthetic bridge winner received a $25 gift certificate, courtesy of BSA, a Stony Brook University and Battelle partnership that manages the Laboratory for the Department of Energy. BSA will also send the top two winners to Chicago in April to enter the 2001 International Bridge Building Contest.