Harnessing young energy

Scottish youngsters are being asked to turn their energy to generating energy in the 2016 Junior Saltire Awards.

Carnoustie High from Angus ton the S1-S3 age group prize in the Junior Saltire Awards 2015.
Carnoustie High from Angus ton the S1-S3 age group prize in the Junior Saltire Awards 2015.

The Junior Saltire Awards 2016 is inviting teams of pupils from primary and secondary schools to design, build and test a simple floating Wave Energy Converter, harnessing wave power to create electricity.

Teams coming up with the best designs will get the chance to put their gadgets to the test at the University of Edinburgh’s FloWave Ocean Energy Research Facility – the world’s most sophisticated ocean simulator which can recreate multi-directional waves and fast tidal flows.

The competition is open to three age groups: P5-P7, S1-S3 and S4-S6. Teams of four in each age group have until December 18 to register.

Teams have until the end of February to complete a design brief, and until the end of April to provide evidence of their finished model.

Judges will then draw up a shortlist of 12 teams in each age group who will be invited to FloWave to try out their inventions on June 9, with winners being announced at the Celebration of Engineering and Science at Glasgow Science Centre the following day.

Teams can also win prizes of up to £750 for their school as well as Junior Saltire trophies.

The competition is supported by the Scottish Government and delivered by the Scottish Council for Development and Industry (SCDI) in partnership with Skills Development Scotland (SDS).

Looking forward to the competition, Stuart Brown, Chief Executive Officer at FloWave, said: “It’s always a pleasure to see the wonderful designs and ideas of all the pupils who participate in the Junior Saltire Awards, and to offer the shortlisted teams the opportunity to test their models at our world-leading facility.

“Science and engineering are key to our modern-day lives, and it is great to think that the engineers and energy pioneers of the future may come from amongst these pupils.”

Last year there were more than 200 entries for the competition, which is is the junior version of the £10million Saltire Prize Challenge, created by the Scottish Government to accelerate the commercial development of wave and tidal energy technology.