Education

Two Yorktown High School Students Win Acorda Science Award

7fd846b1474c7394989b_81e7b3a74030c78a7a54_47596.jpg
Emily Huang with her mentor
755c139ed726af1b70a7_f991480134de0e4de9ac_47597.jpg
Liam Cushen
7fd846b1474c7394989b_81e7b3a74030c78a7a54_47596.jpg

YORKTOWN, N.Y. - Two science research students at Yorktown High School have been recognized for their innovative projects.

Seniors Liam Cushen and Emily Huang were awarded the Acorda Scientific Excellence Award, which was created to encourage students to pursue careers in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Winners receive a plaque in recognition of their outstanding research, and their school receives an award for display.

Cushen used algorithms to forecast the availability of solar power. The algorithms looked at photographs of the sky, taken at 30-second intervals. Able to detect clouds, and the movement and therefore speed of the clouds, enabled the algorithms to determine whether they would interfere with the sun’s radiation reaching a solar panel. Cushen’s work was motivated by climate change, and was aimed at improving the efficiency of solar power.

Sign Up for E-News

“I got involved with my project because I wanted to combine my passion for the environment and renewable energies with computer science,” Cushen said. “After reading a lot of journal articles on solar energy and ‘solar forecasting,’ I realized that one of the leading experts in the area worked very close to where I live. After I reached out to him, he began helping me immediately, and we began crafting my current project.”

In the fall, Cushen will attend Cornell University, where he will study business and computer science.

Huang’s project looked at different materials that would change color when placed under physical stress. Each year, many bridges collapse, half due to a structural deficiency, according to studies. While there are many ways to detect strain, Huang’s materials have a more sensitive color change, are inexpensive and have simple production methods.

“I chose this project because I really wanted to do something in engineering,” Huang said. “I think engineering projects really foster a sense of creativity and ingenuity that I thought were valuable skills in the future. I was also very interested in this color changing mechanism, and I thought that it would have a lot of applications in the real world—not only to act as a strain sensor, but also perhaps in smaller materials like rubber bands or toys.”

In college, Huang hopes to study something engineering-related, possibly within the field of materials science. She would also like to explore other fields.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Yorktown

Here's What You Missed Last Week

Last week, the Daily News ran a headline, “When is our father coming home?” This dealt with a person here illegally, married to an American woman with a family, who was arrested at an Army base while delivering pizza. You are supposed to think that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), under Trump, is tearing families apart. As usual, it was a crock of cow pies. It was ...

Remembering Bobby Kennedy

I’m not the type of person who is prone to hero worship. Witnessing people screaming hysterically during rock concerts never sat well with me. Yes, I did see many a great group (the Rolling Stones, Simon & Garfunkel, the Who, the Doors), yet my demeanor was always one reflecting inner peace rather than extreme exuberance.

I was offered tickets to Woodstock (yes, originally you needed ...

Competing—Against Yourself

This is the time of year when students are recognized at public ceremonies for notable achievements in their studies, their sports and in their extracurricular pursuits.

Where we live, there are awards in various sports that are named for our son, who also is memorialized by town ballfield Harrison Apar Field of Dreams and a charitable foundation of the same name.

Due to a rare dwarfism, ...

I Come from the Land Down Under

I know this is a family column, so I’m going to put this in as delicate terms as possible.

This morning I woke up and I knew, as sure as the sun shines over Bora Bora, that something was very, very wrong in that place in my body where the Bora Bora sun doesn’t shine.

It’s that place I used to refer to my daughter as her hoo-hoo. But it certainly wasn’t a happy ...

Andy’s at It Again

June 13, 2018

A couple of years ago, I wrote to question why Andy wasn’t citing his sources when he flings dirt at any Democrat he wants to malign.

Well, he’s at it again. In the latest iteration, he tells us that Obama was responsible for putting a spy in the Trump campaign. He then repeats himself three more times to emphasize his point, but gives no proof or evidence to back up the ...

Yorktown Youth Soccer Club Results

June 15, 2018

Sunday, June 10  - The Yorktown Crew clinched the Westchester Youth Soccer League JV-1 Division with a 4-3 win over Rivertown FC on Sunday. The team has been on a remarkable run for the past 2 seasons with a team record of 16-1-1. Sunday’s matchup vs Rivertown had a championship like atmosphere as Rivertown trailed Yorktown by 1 point in the standings. The Crew worked hard all week in ...