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  • Northside West

Northsiders blind us with science at the RDS

Thursday, 16th January, 2020 6:00pm
Northsiders blind us with science at the RDS

Aoife Hughes, Rugile Auskalnyte and Aoife Scully from St Marys Glasnevin.

Northsiders blind us with science at the RDS

Aoife Hughes, Rugile Auskalnyte and Aoife Scully from St Marys Glasnevin.

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Aoife O'Brien

NORTHSIDE schools were well represented at last week’s BT Young Scientist & Technology Exhibition at the RDS.

Castleknock Community College students Alison Egan and Caoimhe Harrington conducted a study of how the structures of pyrite degrade using artificial oxidation

Caoimhe explained: “Pyrite is basically a mineral which is made of iron and sulphur and is causing a big problem in Ireland in housing. Pyrite, when reacting with water and oxygen, oxidises and forms gypsum which expands out into the backfill and concrete in your house which causes cracking and structural problems. We just wanted to look into the different structures of pyrite. There are three different structures, one of which is said to be more reactive than the other two, so we wanted to investigate this using a process of artificial oxidation.”

Alison added: “Our results found that all three structures of pyrite are equally reactive. There are other factors at play other than the composition, such as the permeability of the rock and what type of rock it is.”

Rugile Auskalnyte, Aoife Scully and Aoife Hughes, from St Mary’s Secondary School, Glasnevin, carried out an investigation into the creation and awareness of the 20x20 female sports campaign.

Rugile said: “Our project is about the 20x20 campaign and if it has the power to shift Ireland’s culture and perception of women in sport and we found that it doesn’t really but it is a great first step into an equal Ireland in sport. 

“We found that it’s doing really well at professional level, putting the professionals into the limelight and increasing the media coverage and attendance at women’s games, but it’s not doing much for the participation rate in schools and at grassroots level it’s not really publicised.”

Aoife added: “The dropout rate is around secondary school and we’ve seen a lot of our friends drop out. This campaign is aimed at teenagers but we haven’t seen any changes at that grassroots level."

Luke McQuaid, Jack Casey and Rian Fox, from Colaiste Mhuire, Cabra. They were entrants in the 2020 BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition with their project, ‘What Risk Does Social Engineering Pose?’. Michael O Cinnéide, from Scoil Chaitriona, Drumcondra.

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