|2006 New Haven Science Fair
Special Astronomical category
The Astronomical Society of New Haven once again had the honor of reviewing astronomy related projects entered
into the New Haven Science Fair. This annual city-wide event is comprised of individual, team, and classroom
categories that have made it to this level from previous competition. The participants hail from grades K thru 12.
In the past, we've presented a telescope and accessory kit to the individual entrant whose project and grasp of
their chosen topic impressed us most, and monetary awards for First, Second, and Third place. We have broken
from that tradition this year, as a two-person team was selected as the Grand Prize recipients. Rather than agonize
over how to split the prize, we decided to provide telescopes and accessory kits to both of them! We were also torn
in choosing between Second and Third place categories and decided to declare each as recipients of Second
Place, and elevate the award amounts accordingly!
We hope to continue to fine-tune our presence, motivating more students to enter the event with astronomy
related projects... perhaps even enticing some who otherwise might not have taken part.
Natalie B. and Cleo O.
"A Mote in the Sun's Eye"
Mrs. Mullins Second Grade Class, Davis Magnet School
"Does the Sun Rotate?"
"Solar Energy - Power from the Sun"
Ms Hill and Ms Grasso Second Grade Class, Davis Magnet School
"The Right Stuff"
Left: Worthington Hooker grade 8 students Natalie and Cleo assessed the effects particulate matter have upon
Right: ASNH Vice President emeritus Al Washburn and President Greg Barker presenting Cleo and Natalie with
certificates and the Society's Grand Prize, 6" Celestron Dobsonian mounted telescopes and accessory kits.
On the final day of judging, with only one grand prize scope and kit on hand and the awards ceremony the next
evening , we decided not to play King Solomon (splitting the prize) but to get an identical setup for each. Dave,
Bob, and the gang at High Point Scientific helped pull it off, getting the equipment out that day and arriving three
states away by the next afternoon (thanks, guys!) We assembled and collimated the second scope on the stage,
finishing minutes before the ceremony began (Phew... talk about cutting it close!)
Congratulations should also be afforded to the teachers, mentors, sponsors, and everyone working behind the
scenes to make this stellar event possible. Thus the torch of knowledge is passed to another generation, lighting
the way for them as others had done for us. Our sincere gratitude for your generous gifts of time and talent!
Judging was a two-day collaborative effort performed by members Greg Barker, Bob and Patty Carruthers, Andy
Ponieros, Dave Johnson, Ray Kaville, Al Washburn, and myself, Paul Hyndman. Representing ASNH at the
awards ceremony were President Greg Barker, Vice President Bob Carruthers, Patty Carruthers, Vice President
emeritus Al Washburn, and myself, STARS Chair Paul Hyndman (AKA: "astro-nut").
As in previous years, discussions are already underway as to what we can do to make future events better yet,
encouraging more young minds to reach for the stars and beyond!
Left: Classroom representatives Rhianna B., Taylor N., Danae R., Tamarik M., teacher Ms. Mullins and mentor
Prof. Basu explain what they discovered by monitoring and plotting sunspots. They impressed us with their
knowledge and exhuberant enthusiasm... terrific job!
Right: ASNH President Greg Barker presents a "really big check" and award certificate to class rep as his
proud parents look on.
6th grader Nyah investigated and plotted the reduction of
energy upon a solar cell as distance increases.
Al Washburn and Greg Barker presenting our second place
award for her concise work and excellent presentation.
Left: Classroom reps Rachael Y., Jahmal D., and Frank O. explain the suitablility of various materials considered
for use in space suits. Their project was so well done that we decided to make an additional second-place award in
lieu of third place.
Right: Al Washburn and Greg Barker present a check and certificate to class rep.