KwaZulu-Natal’s Suhaan Singh, 16, will be representing South Africa in the 2021 Virtual Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) in the United States. Picture: JeVanne Gibbs
KwaZulu-Natal’s Suhaan Singh, 16, will be representing South Africa in the 2021 Virtual Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) in the United States. Picture: JeVanne Gibbs

KZN teen to fly SA flag at US science fair

By Zainul Dawood Time of article published Apr 14, 2021

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DURBAN - SUHAAN Singh, 16, from St Dominic’s Academy in Newcastle used a Lego kit to construct and modify a robot to automate the Covid-19 screening and sanitising process.

His modification got him selected to represent South Africa in the 2021 Virtual Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (Isef) in the US.

Suhaan won a bronze medal at the 2020 Eskom Expo International Science Fair, where he demonstrated an advanced and in-depth understanding of the engineering category, producing research at an international level.

The project also addressed a contemporary issue, while the research was creative and novel.

He said the manual process of Covid-19 screening is inefficient and ineffective, as multiple personnel were required to man the screening station to record visitor details when entering an establishment, followed by hand sanitising and scanning of their temperatures.

“This causes a decline in work productivity and personnel’s working time to scan customers.

“The research conducted investigated ways to maximise the efficiency of the screening process by creating a mechanical means (robot) capable of executing the entire process,” said Suhaan.

Eskom general manager of Risk and Sustainability Andrew Etzinger said they contribute to the development of young scientists and engineers for the country, through investing in the Eskom Expo for Young Scientists.

“Eskom is proud that every year, our young scientists compete in the largest science fair in the world, Regeneron Isef, and produces world-class research projects to compete with the best in the world. Suhaan has demonstrated the innovation that is much needed in SA, to help make us internationally competitive, as he takes this step onto the international stage,” said Etzinger.

The Regeneron Isef event takes place between May 16 and 21.

Eskom Expo executive director Parthy Chetty said: “Congratulations to the school for producing excellent young scientists each year. Suhaan has demonstrated how to identify problems/challenges all around us, and then proceeded to solve one of them. This is a great example of extending what is learnt in school and applying it to the real world around us. Eskom Expo makes this possible.”

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