Dr Karl and Adam Spencer

Finalists in our Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize

29 September 2020
Creative science films by school students rewarded
Primary and high school students from across Australia are finalists and highly commended award winners in our University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prize.

This year, students were given the theme of 'water' to make their 90 second films on, communicating scientific concepts in accessible and engaging ways.

For their insightful, creative and amusing takes on the science of water, six finalists and 16 highly commended award winners have been anounced today in our University of Sydney Sleek Geeks Science Eureka Prizes. 

The prizes are named after the Sleek Geeks - Dr Karl Kruszelnicki, Julius Sumner Miller Fellow at the University of Sydney, and Adam Spencer, Mathematics and Science Ambassador at the University of Sydney.    

All six finalists will find out which prize they have won on 24 November in the online Eureka Prizes ceremony. 

Primary school finalists

Scarlett P and Scarlett O, from Oak Flats Primary School, NSW

Super Cooled Science examines how water turns into ice and explains ‘supercooling’, the process of chilling a liquid below its freezing point, without it becoming solid. Using claymation and dance, Scarlett and Scarlett illustrate the role that energy plays in this transformation and describe one of the ways supercooled water is being used by scientists.

Clara P, from Maribyrnong Primary School, ACT

Have you ever wondered why some bugs can walk on water? In Stretching the Tension, Clara explores the role of surface tension, revealing how water acts like an elastic membrane that stretches when forces are applied to it — just like a trampoline.

Levi S, from Norwood Primary School, Tas

The Leidenfrost Effect investigates what occurs when a liquid heated past its boiling point doesn’t evaporate, but instead glides across the surface it’s resting on. Levi demonstrates this effect using water droplets in a hot pan and shares a series of diagrams to explain what takes place at a molecular level.

High school finalists

Aneirin G, from St Leonard's College, Vic

Synovial Fluid and Subatomic Particles is an investigation into how quantum effects in water help our joints move. Taking to his local sports field, Aneirin explains the important role of synovial fluid in the human body and reveals how recent scientific discoveries have transformed scientists’ understanding of how this fluid behaves.

Himalaya J, from Balwyn High School, Vic

Look at your windowpane on a rainy day and you’ll almost certainly see tiny water droplets move closer together until they merge. In The Secret Life of Droplets, Himalaya uses a lively combination of song and animation to explain the science behind this phenomenon.

Jessica N, and Zacharie N, from St Matthews Catholic School, NSW

In Rebellious Water, Jessica and Zacharie examine why water seemingly defies the rules of chemistry. They use animation to illustrate the forces at play between water molecules, known as hydrogen bonds, and describe how this impacts the physical properties of water in its different states.

Highly Commended - primary school

Highly Commended - high school

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