Brookhaven Lab Announces 2024 Science Fair Results

Eden Campbell enlarge

Eden Campbell, center, won the top spot among kindergarten projects. (Kevin Coughlin/Brookhaven National Laboratory)

UPTON, N.Y. — More than 250 students from 65 Suffolk County schools entered science projects in the 2024 Elementary School Science Fair hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory on June 8.

Students used the scientific method to explore all kinds of questions about their favorite things and the world around them. The annual fair organized by Brookhaven Lab’s Office of Educational Programs celebrated and showcased all projects submitted, ranging from finding the best detangler for Barbie dolls’ hair to using a hand-crafted wind tunnel to test wing shapes for the best lift.

“Our judges enjoyed reading through the projects and were impressed with questions, ideas, and designs,” Amanda Horn, a Brookhaven Lab administrator who coordinated the science fair, said before announcing the winning projects. “We certainly have some future scientists and engineers here today.”

Local teachers and Lab staff volunteered as judges to pick the top spots and honorable mentions for each grade level, from kindergarten to sixth grade. The competition also included a Judges’ Choice award for creative questions.

Students who earned first place in their grade level received medals and ribbons, along with banners to hang at their school to recognize the achievement. All participants received a ribbon in recognition of having won their grade level competition at their school.

2024 Elementary Science Fair Competition

See more photos from the award ceremonies, science fair displays, and Science Fair Expo. Hover over image to reveal slideshow controls. (Kevin Coughlin/Brookhaven National Laboratory).

Science Fair Awards


Eden Campbell enlarge

Eden Campbell (Kevin Coughlin/Brookhaven National Laboratory)

First Place: “Tasting Color” by Eden Campbell, Ocean Avenue Elementary School

After the kindergarten awards ceremony, Campbell said she liked looking at other students’ projects while at the fair.

Campbell’s own project explored whether the color of food affects its taste. What was her favorite part of the experiment? “Eating the jellybeans,” she said.

Judges’ Choice: “Why is the Statue of Liberty Green?” by John Jantzen, Sunrise Drive Elementary School

Honorable Mentions

  • “Racing Down the Right Track” by Michael McCarthy, Pines Elementary School
  • “Can you Get Sick at School” by Scarlett Luna, Hampton Bays Elementary School
  • “Can you Ballieve It?” by Autumn Vlacci, Riley Avenue Elementary School

First Grade

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Milan Patel (Courtesy image)

First Place: “How Does the Direction of a House Affect the Amount of Heat Absorbed from the Sun?” by Milan Patel, Ocean Avenue Elementary School

Judges’ Choice: “Which Basin Makes You a Faster Raisin?” by Julianna Zick, West Middle Island Elementary School

Honorable Mentions

  • “The Speed Racer” by Tyler Paino, Bretton Woods Elementary School
  • “Solar System Temperatures” by Logan Pierre, Brookhaven Elementary School
  • “Kernels of Knowledge” by Nora Boecherer, Edna Louise Spear Elementary School

Second Grade

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Advika Arun (Kevin Coughlin/Brookhaven National Laboratory)

First Place: “Slower and Steadier the Safer it Will Be” by Advika Arun, Bretton Woods Elementary School

For her experiment, Arun crafted small parachutes to test which materials fostered a slow and safe landing. She found that nylon worked the best.

“I liked the part where we dropped them and we saw the speed they went,” she said. She added of her first-place win, “I’m really excited!”

Judges’ Choice: “Metal Strength” by Timothy Donoghue, Riley Avenue Elementary School

Honorable Mentions

  • “The Ball Drop” by Charlotte Tholl, Forest Brook Elementary School
  • “The Science of Mummification” by Gabi Opisso, Cutchogue East Elementary School
  • “Which Drink Has the Most Electrolytes?” by Matthew Ingram, Ocean Avenue Elementary School
  • “Put Yourself in My Shoes” by Erios Pikramenos, Frank J. Carasiti Elementary School
  • “Why Do Apples Turn Brown?” by Maya Salman, Edna Louise Spear Elementary School

Third Grade

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Isla Cone (Kevin Coughlin/Brookhaven National Laboratory)

First Place: “The Impact of pH on Boba” by Isla Cone, Love of Learning Montessori School

Cone tested food-friendly liquids with different pH levels to find out which could form boba, the round and chewy pearls found in bubble tea. She confirmed that boba spheres occurred in liquids with a pH between 4 and 10.

“I wanted to do a project that was related to food,” Cone said. “My favorite part was getting to eat all the stuff!”

Judges’ Choice: “Key to Happiness” by Charlotte Sheahan, Pulaski Road School

Honorable Mentions

  • “Crunch Cereal Science” by Emma Puccio Edelman, Hiawatha Elementary School
  • “Which Keel is Ideal? Exploring Keel Dynamics for Smoother Sailing on Long Island Waters” by Vincent Calvanese, Pines Elementary School
  • “Does the Size of a Dog Determine the Pitch of Its Park?” by Kaylee Krawchuck, Ridge Elementary School
  • “Protecting Your Houses from Storm Surge: Which Wall Works Best?” by Isabella Guldi, Joseph A. Edgar Intermediate School

Fourth Grade

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Jude Roseto (Courtesy image)

First Place: “Rise of the Machines: AI vs. Human Creativity Writing” by Jude Roseto, Cutchogue East Elementary School

Judges’ Choice: “Double Trouble - A Twin Study” by Dominick Padolecchia, Sunrise Drive Elementary School

Honorable Mentions

  • “Why Do Clam Shells Turn Blue?” by Juliam Gianmugnai, Ridge Elementary School
  • “Mind Blown” by Joseph Frederick, Lincoln Avenue Elementary School
  • “Ripe Apple Detection Circuit” by Gabriel Affatato, Pulaski Road School
  • “Lyte Me Up!” by Levi Beaver, Raynor Country Day School

Fifth Grade

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Luke Dinsman (Kevin Coughlin/Brookhaven National Laboratory)

First Place: “Maximizing Moisture – Nature Knows Best” by Luke Dinsman, Northport Middle School

In his project, Dinsman found that homemade, natural moisturizers worked better than store-bought lotions at treating the dry skin he experiences as a swimmer. A shea body butter with beeswax turned out to be the best option.

Making the lotions and testing them was the best part of the process, Dinsman said. He added, “It’s just a really cool project.”

Judges’ Choice: “Global Warming, Ocean Currents, and our Planet Earth” by Isabella Maharlouei, Raynor Country Day School

Honorable Mentions

  • “Minding My Snacks” by Evangeline Jamros, Edna Louise Spear Elementary
  • “Brine Shrimp and Minerals” by Colette Breig, RJO Intermediate School
  • “Does the Angle Matter?” by Riona Mittal, Bretton Woods Elementary School

Sixth Grade

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Owen Stone (Courtesy image)

First Place: “Can Common Foods Help Grow Potatoes?” by Owen Stone, East Quogue Elementary

Judges’ Choice: “Smiling Through the Pain” by Zoe Wood, Northport Middle School

Honorable Mentions

  • “Bright Lights” by Eamon Ryan, Lindenhurst Middle School
  • “Paper Plane Experiment” by Michael Mineo, Silas Wood 6th Grade Center
  • “Hydroponics versus Soil” by Alex Uihlein, Montauk Public School

Science Fair Expo

While their projects were on display, students and their families browsed a Science Fair Expo that featured up-close, hands-on demonstrations guided by Brookhaven Lab staff, interns, and volunteers.

The activities connected to science concepts and tools found across the Lab, from magnets and particle accelerators to electron microscopy and conductors. Students peered through microscopes, learned how fuel cells and solar panels work, became junior beamline operators, and more.

Science Fair Expo enlarge

Visitors learned about Brookhaven Lab's science through hands-on activities at the Science Fair Expo. (Kevin Coughlin/Brookhaven National Laboratory)

The Science Fair was sponsored by Brookhaven Science Associates, which manages and operates the Lab on behalf of DOE, and Teachers Federal Credit Union.

Brookhaven National Laboratory is supported by the Office of Science of the U.S. Department of Energy. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit

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