Center Moriches Students Win Top Honors at Brookhaven Lab's Maglev Contest

UPTON, NY — Center Moriches Middle School students won eight of the 21 trophies awarded at the annual Middle School Maglev Contest held at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory on March 23. Students from Longwood Junior High School won four awards, and Albert G. Prodell Middle School students won three.

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With maglev inventors James Powell (seated, left) and Gordon Danby (seated, right), and Ken White (back, right), manager of Brookhaven Lab’s Office of Educational Programs, are the first-place winners of Brookhaven Lab’s 2011 Middle School Maglev Contest: (from left) Paige Monaco, Center Moriches Middle School; Scott Noethiger, Albert G. Prodell Middle School; Kevin Albert, Center Moriches; Devon Mockridge, Center Moriches; Christopher Ferguson, Center Moriches; Stephen Spinelli, Prodell; and Chris Lico, Longwood Junior High School.

Gordon Danby and James Powell, retired Brookhaven Lab scientists who invented and patented maglev — the suspension, guidance, and propulsion of vehicles by magnetic forces — were honored guests at the contest. Powell gave a brief talk to the students, in which he predicted that, within the next 20 years, a maglev network would be in place in the U.S. that would allow passengers to travel anywhere in the nation at a speed of 300 miles per hour. He also predicted that one day maglev might be used to launch rockets into space.

About 200 students from 12 Long Island middle schools entered the contest, in which they were required to design and construct model maglev vehicles according to engineering specifications in their choice of seven categories: electrified track, wind power, gravity, self-propelled balloon, self-propelled other, futuristic, and scale-model design. Judging was based on speed, efficiency, appearance, and the students’ written design process.

Robert Moses Middle School students won two prizes, and Great Neck South, Hicksville, Mineola, and Northport Middle School students each won one prize.

2011-11255  |  INT/EXT  |  Newsroom