Sibling Inventors Focus on Helping Others

Siblings Rebecca (Year 6) and Leon (Year 9) placed as Winner and Semi Finalist respectively in their individual age categories in the BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Awards. Their altruistic creations are creative and show great dedication to using science and engineering to improve the world.

Rebecca, who was named the Primary School Winner for Engineering, used syringes, water and tubing to transform an ordinary walking frame into the ‘Multi Walker’, which makes it easier for the elderly to climb stairs and walk on ramps and other uneven surfaces. Rebecca said her invention was inspired by her grandmother because, “we cannot take her to many restaurants because she cannot get inside. This is sometimes due to one little step that she is unable to climb. My grandmother’s walker (which is a normal one) cannot get up the step without a high risk of falling over. That is why I invented the Multi Walker, so people don’t have to feel limited. Rebecca added, “My invention fixes the problem because it allows the person to get up and down stairs with the squeeze of a trigger.”

Leon also focused on helping people with his invention, Backward Vision Ski Goggles. He explained that his family are avid skiiers and that he worries that many potentially harmful accidents can happen when a skiier bumps into you from behind. In a bid to make skiing safer for the people he cares about, he went through many ideas and concepts, weighing the pros and cons and coming up with workable prototypes. Leon said, “Nobody has eyes in the back of their head! My project aims to warn the skier/snowboarder of imminent danger by giving them a wider field of vision. This means they can safely avoid a collision, saving themselves and giving an out-of-control skier/snowboarder time to recover. The project is modelled on a rear vision mirror of a car, which serves the exact same purpose for automobiles – to prevent collision.”

Well done to both students for their outstanding accomplishments!

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