Indian students win industry water prize

The team won for their floating solar-powered desalination plant video

A national team of students from India have won the Xylem Water Prize 2017. Presented at the 14th annual International Junior Science Olympiad (IJSO) in the Netherlands, the theme of 2017’s IJSO was Water and Sustainability.

Team India’s video was deemed the winner for incorporating the three key elements to reduce, reuse, and recycle through the team’s floating solar-powered desalination plant. They were presented with a certificate and an iPad. To enter, invited participating students had to produce a video answering the question, ‘How do you solve water?’ All submissions were evaluated for impact, clarity, creativity and innovation by an international judging panel.

“The threats to our water resources have never been greater, but, increasingly, there are sustainable solutions to these challenges driven by advanced technologies,” said Patrick Decker, President and Chief Executive Officer of Xylem. “This is the next generation of the world’s problem-solvers and innovators and they won’t let their thinking or curiosity be constrained by the traditional models of the past.”

The 14th International Junior Science Olympiad was organised by the IJSO 2017 Foundation. During the competition, students were tested on their knowledge and skills in physics, biology and chemistry. The 2017 theme of Water and Sustainability’ was particularly fitting for the Netherlands–a nation that pioneered smart water management for generations.

“We find that one of the biggest obstacles and impediments to helping solve the water issue is education and awareness,” added Decker. “The fact that these teenagers are so excited by this cause and if I could capture that energy and that awareness and spread that across the planet, we’d solve water tomorrow.”

More than 300 students aged 15 years or younger from 50 different countries tested their scientific knowledge and skills in the competition.