A young Turkish research has won the Stockholm Junior Water Prize for her work demonstrating how rainwater can be harnessed to produce electricity.
The prize, sponsored globally by ITT Corporation, was announced at the World Water Week in Stockholm. The prize-winner — 18-year-old Ceren Burçak Dag, of Nisantasi, Turkey — showed how PVDF, a smart material with piezoelectric properties, can be used to capture the kinetic energy of raindrops and transform it into electrical energy.
Dag receives a $5,000 award and an expense-paid trip to Orlando, Florida, in October, to present her findings at the World Environment Federation annual conference, the largest water quality and technology event in North America.
The jury also awarded Diplomas of Excellence to Emily Elhacham of Israel for her project on water contamination and Mary Zhao of Canada for her project on precipitation.
“I am so proud of Ceren Burçak Dag and the thousands of students from across the world who participated in this competition,” said Gretchen McClain, president of the commercial business unit of ITT. “These projects underscore the importance of involving the next generation in scientific research and taking action to find solutions to today’s water and energy challenges.”
With her project, Dag said, :we have a new energy source from rain. I hope that my work will contribute to the development of the next generation of energy panels where rain, sun and wind are combined.”
The Stockholm Junior Water Prize is presented each year to high-school age students for outstanding water-related projects that focus on topics of environmental, scientific, social or technological importance. Winners of 29 national competitions competed for the international prize, which was awarded by an international jury of water professionals and scientists. The prize is administered by the Stockholm International Water Institute.