Everything from traffic safety to chickens and ballet shoes has had a scientific eye cast over it ahead of this year’s
NIWA Wellington Science and Technology Fair.
The annual fair, one of seven regional events sponsored by NIWA, has attracted 328 entries from 34 schools in the region
and is being held on Friday and Saturday at the Alan MacDiarmid Building at Victoria University.
The students are competing for a total of about $15,000 in prizes with the top prize for best overall exhibit attracting
the NIWA prize of $1000.
Among the projects up for judging this year is a study into how pest control has impacted native bird numbers in
Wellington’s eastern suburbs as well as a project examining how much nitrate is in different water sources in the region
and an investigation into improving traffic safety at T junctions on the open road. One student has also tested various
materials in ballet shoes to take the pressure off toes.
NIWA freshwater ecologist and science fair coordinator Tracey Burton says the fairs are an important platform for
students to think about and engage with science.
“For many young students, science fairs are the first time they will design and carry out their own scientific
investigation. We hope the experience will inspire them to pursue careers in science and technology.”
Sponsoring science and technology fairs throughout New Zealand is part of NIWA’s long-term commitment to enhancing
science and technology for young New Zealanders.
The NIWA Wellington Science and Technology Fair is open to the public on Friday from midday to 5pm and on Saturday from
9am to noon.