Los Alamos Public Schools Announces District Science Fair Results – Los Alamos Reporter


Winners in the Senior Division at the LAPS Science Fair with Acting Asst. Supt. Carter Payne. Courtesy LAPS

LAHS Junior Daniel Kim, left, was awarded Best of Show for the Senior Division in the 2023 Los Alamos County Science Fair and LAPS Acting Asst. Supt. Carter Payne. Courtesy LAPS

Junior Division award winners with LAPS Acting Asst. Supt. Carter Payne. Courtesy photo

Award winners in the Elementary Division in the LAPS District Science Fair. Courtesy LAPS

LAPS NEWS RELEASE

More than 65 projects were on display as students from elementary, middle and high school participated in the 2023 Los Alamos County Science Fair this past weekend. Thirty-two students qualified for the 2023 Northeastern New Mexico Regional Science Fair which will be hosted by New Mexico Highlands University on March 11.

Los Alamos High School junior Daniel Kim was awarded Best of Show for the Senior Division for his project in the Environmental Sciences category, “Mapping Anthropogenic Ocean Litter with an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle.”

Head judge for the Science Fair was Cathy Snelson, with assistants Jonas Kintner and Nishath Ranasinghe.  

County Science Fair Director Eva Abeyta and Assistant Director Pamela Miller played a major role behind the success of the Science Fair. “Your hard work has not gone unnoticed,” said Acting Assistant Superintendent Carter Payne during the elementary and junior/senior award ceremonies in the Los Alamos Middle School gym Saturday evening.

Members of the Science Fair committee included Amy Gilbert and Emily Christensen, Aspen Elementary; Stephanie Martinez, Barranca Mesa Elementary; Deidre Thorn, Chamisa Elementary; Mary Alice Hawkins, Mountain Elementary; David Krell and Tera Deines, Piñon Elementary; Naomi Unger, Los Alamos Middle School; Jacqueline Griego, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy; Michela Ombelli, Los Alamos High School and Lynn Strauss, community volunteer.

Over 75 students shared over $3,700 in cash and gift certificates provided by community sponsors including PEEC, Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos, Los Alamos Master Gardeners, Science Fair Committee, American Society for Materials LA Chapter, Pajarito Astronomers, Bradbury Science Museum, Los Alamos Symphony Orchestra, New Mexico Consortium, Pajarito Masonic Lodge, AAUW Los Alamos, LAMS PTO, Los Alamos Garden Club and an anonymous donor.

2023 Los Alamos County Science Fair Awards

Best of Show for Elementary Division

Earth Science: Julian Delorey, Barranca Mesa Elementary

Life Science: James Junghans, Barranca Mesa Elementary

Physical Science: Neal Somasekharean, Mountain Elementary, and Alexander Sherrill, Mountain Elementary

Best of Show for Class Projects 

Grades K – 2: Mrs. Littleton’s Class, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Grades 3 – 4: Mrs. Griego’s 3rd/4th Grade, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Best of Show for Junior Division

Life Science: John Fung, Los Alamos Middle School

Physical Science: Rebekah Scott, Aspen Elementary, and Aditya Viswanathan, Los Alamos Middle School

Best of Show for Senior Division

Physical Science: Daniel Kim, Los Alamos High School

Winners of the Elementary Division awards with Acting Asst. Supt. Carter Payne. Courtesy LAPS

Elementary Division Awards

Earth Science

Honorable Mention – Julian Delorry, Barranca Mesa Elementary

Honorable Mention – Mrs. Littleton’s 2nd Grade Class, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Life Science

1st – James Junghans, Barranca Mesa Elementary

2nd – Sequoya Ke and Benji Minko, Mountain Elementary

3rd – Oliver Saenz, Chamisa Elementary

Honorable Mention – Sebastian Holtkamp, Chamisa Elementary

Physical Science

1st – Alexander Sherrill, Mountain Elementary

2nd – Fiona Smith, Mountain Elementary

3rd – Javier Chacon, Max Renner and Lane Metcalf, Mountain Elementary

Honorable Mention – Natalia Griego, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Honorable Mention – Neal Somasekharan, Mountain Elementary

Elementary Award Winners by Category: 

Earth Science 

HM- Julian Delorey, “Impact Craters from Asteroids” – Barranca HM- Mrs. Littleton’s 2nd Grade Class, “Observing the Water Cycle”,  LAOLA 

Life Science 

HM – Sebastian Holtkamp, “Best Growing Conditions”, Chamisa 3rd- Oliver Saenz, “The Rise of Yeast”, Chamisa 

2nd- Sequoya Ke & Benji Minko, “Effects of Different Liquids on a  Type of Food”, Mo 

1st – James Junghans, “What affects Mold Growth on bread?”,  Barranca 

Physical Science 

HM- Natalia Griego, “Solar Oven”, LAOLA 

HM- Neal Somasekharan, “Nature’s Tie Dye”, Mountain 

3rd- Javier Chacon, Max Renner & Lane Metcalf, “Liquid Launchers”,  Mountain 

2nd- Fiona Smith, “How Can I Bike more Successfully at High  Altitude?”, Mountain 

1st – Alexander Sherrill, “Comparing Lemon Batteries to Regular  Batteries”, Mountain 

Best of Show for Elementary – 

Earth Science Julian Delorey, Barranca
Life Science  James Junghans, Barranca
Physical Science Neal Somasekharan, Mountain and Alexander Sherrill, Mountain

Best of Show for Class Projects: 

Grades K-2: Mrs. Littleton, LAOLA 

Grades 3-5: Mrs. Griego, Grades 3rd/4th LAOLA

Special Awards Elementary

Student Name Amount Organization
Aiden Cole  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Alexander Sherrill $50 GC to NM Museum of Natural  History & Science  Pajarito Masonic Lodge
Alexander Sherrill  $50.00 American Society for Materials  LA Chapter
Alexander Sherrill  $20.00 AAUW Los Alamos
Alexander Sherrill  $20.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Chul-So Ritter  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Chul-So Ritter  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Clare Reardon  $20.00 PEEC
Clare Reardon  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Clare Reardon  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Eleanor Nora Haaser  $20.00 PEEC
Eleanor Nora Haaser  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Emma Mosby  $20.00 AAUW Los Alamos
Emma Mosby  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Ethan Mendez  $50.00 American Society for Materials  LA Chapter
Ethan Mendez  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Evan Guerrero  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Evan Guerrero  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Fiona Smith $50 GC to NM Museum of Natural  History & Science  Pajarito Masonic Lodge
Fiona Smith  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Fiona Smith  $20.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Genevieve Marshall  $30.00 Los Alamos Garden Club
Genevieve Marshall  $30.00 Los Alamos Master Gardeners
Genevieve Marshall  $20.00 AAUW Los Alamos
Genevieve Marshall  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Henry Rodarte  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Henry Rodarte  $20.00 AAUW Los Alamos
Henry Rodarte  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
James Junghans  $20.00 AAUW Los Alamos
James Junghans  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Javier Chacon/Lane  Metcalf/Max Renner  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Javier Chacon/Lane  Metcalf/Max Renner  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Jocelyne Dolejsi  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Jocelyne Dolejsi  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Julian Delorey  $30.00 Pajarito Astronomers
Julian Delorey  $5.00 Anonymous
Julian Delorey  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Julian Delorey  $50.00 American Society for Materials  LA Chapter
Julian Delorey  $20.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Laura Hill  $40 GC to Gadget Museum  Bradbury Science Musuem
Laura Hill  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Laura Hill  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Leeza Trudolyubov  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Mason Garcia  $40 GC to Gadget Museum  Bradbury Science Musuem
Mason Garcia  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Mason Garcia  $20.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Mrs. Becky Littleton’s 1st Grade  Class  $10.00 LAMS PTO
Mrs. Becky Littleton’s 1st Grade  Class  $50.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Mrs. Becky Littleton’s 2nd  Grade Class  $10.00 LAMS PTO
Mrs. Becky Littleton’s 2nd  Grade Class  $50.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Mrs. Becky Littleton’s  Kindergarten Class  $50.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Mrs. Becky Littleton’s  Kindergarten Class  $35.00 Los Alamos Garden Club
Mrs. Becky Littleton’s  Kindergarten Class $30.00 Los Alamos Master Gardeners
Mrs. Becky Littleton’s  Kindergarten Class  $10.00 LAMS PTO
Mrs. Griego’s 3rd/4th Grade  Class  $10.00 LAMS PTO
Mrs. Griego’s 3rd/4th Grade  Class  $30.00 AAUW Los Alamos
Mrs. Griego’s 3rd/4th Grade  Class  $50.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Natalia Griego $50 GC to NM Museum of Natural  History & Science  Pajarito Masonic Lodge
Natalia Griego  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Natalia Griego  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Neal Somasekharan  $10.00 Anonymous
Neal Somasekharan  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Oliver Saenz  $5.00 Anonymous
Oliver Saenz  $5.00 LAMS PTO
Oliver Saenz  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Riley O’Brien  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Sebastian Holtkamp  $20.00 PEEC
Sebastian Holtkamp  $35.00 Los Alamos Garden Club
Sebastian Holtkamp  $30.00 Los Alamos Master Gardeners
Sebastian Holtkamp  $20.00 AAUW Los Alamos
Sebastian Holtkamp $20.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Sequoya Ke and Benji Minko  $40 GC to Gadget Museum  Bradbury Science Musuem
Sequoya Ke and Benji Minko $50 GC to NM Musuem of Natural  History & Science  Pajarito Masonic Lodge
Sequoya Ke and Benji Minko  $10.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos

Junior Division Awards

Animal Science

1st – Aislinn Marshall, Los Alamos Middle School

2nd – Simeon Capolungo and Hans Gardner, Mountain Elementary 

3rd – Aleyana Baca, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Behavioral & Social Science

Honorable Mention – Sarah Haaser, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Chemistry

1st – Rebekah Scott, Aspen Elementary

2nd – Burke Tastan, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

3rd – Eliot Work, Los Alamos Middle School

Honorable Mention – Riley Fensin, Mountain Elementary

Earth & Planetary Science

Honorable Mention – Luke Patterson, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Engineering: Electrical & Mechanical

1st – Natan Svyatsky, Los Alamos Middle School

2nd – Linus Plohr, Mountain Elementary

Honorable Mention – Bronze Strum, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Honorable Mention – Max Wilson, Barranca Mesa Elementary

Engineering: Materials & Bioengineering

1st-Antonio Martin-DeVargas, LAOLA

Environmental Science

1st – Aditya Viswanathan, Los Alamos Middle School

Medicine & Health Sciences

 1st – Yuiko Yamaguchi, Mountain Elementary

2nd – Grace Norman, Piñon Elementary

Microbiology

1st – John Fung, Los Alamos Middle School

2nd – Jasper Stauffer, Piñon Elementary

3rd – Julia Neale, Barranca Mesa Elementary

Physics & Astronomy

1st – Tate Plohr, Los Alamos Middle School

2nd – Brailyn Manzanares, Barranca Mesa Elementary

3rd – Boden Holmes, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Honorable Mention – Haley Bishofberger, Barranca Mesa Elementary

Plant Sciences

1st – Amelia Hill, Los Alamos Middle School

2nd – Iris Butcher, Los Alamos Online Learning Academy

Senior Division Awards

Chemistry

Honorable Mention – Jason Zhao, Los Alamos High School

Engineering: Electrical & Mechanical

1st – Andres Iturregui , Los Alamos High School

2nd – Michael Bane, Los Alamos High School

Environmental Sciences

1st – Daniel Kim, Los Alamos High School

For a complete list of award winners and their projects, click here.

Junior Division Award Winners by Category: 

Animal Science 

3rd – Aleyana Baca, “Does Sandclear Really work on Horses?”,LAOLA 

2nd – Simeon Capolungo and Hans Gardner, “Will the Temperature of the Incubator affect  the Chicken Hatches?”, Mountain the Time  

1st – Aislinn Marshall, “Hummingbird Preferences”, LAMS 

Behavioral and Social Science 

HM – Sarah Haaser, “Moo Moo Meadows Destruction”, LAOLA 

Chemistry 

HM- Riley Fensin, “What steps in making chocolate mousse affect the outcome  the most if all ingredients are left in the recipe?”, Mountain 

3rd- Elliot Work, “Burn, Baby, Burn”, LAMS 

2nd- Burke Tastan, “What Method Can Create Verdigris Or Patina The  

Fastest?”, LAOLA 

1st- Rebekah Scott, “Fun Filtration”, Aspen 

Earth and Planetary Science 

HM- Luke Patterson, “Jungle in a Jar”, LAOLA 

Engineering: Electrical & Mechanical 

HM – Max Wilson, “Linear Alternator Experiment”, Barranca 

HM – Bronze Strum, “Television Audio Repair”, LAOLA 

2nd – Linus Plohr, “Which Materials Best Block Sound?”, Mountain 

1st – Natan Svyatsky, “Jets on Water”, LAMS 

Medicine and Health Sciences 

2nd – Grace Norman, “Which Band-aid Sticks the Longest?”, Pinon 

1st- Yuiko Yamaguchi, “UV Light Blocking”, Mountain 

Physics and Astronomy 

HM – Haley Bishofberger, “Finding the Right Angle”, Barranca 

3rd – Boden Holmes, “Playing with Infinity Mirrors”, LAOLA 

2nd- Brailyn Manzanares, Brian Scott, Thomas West, “Origami Airplane”,  Barranca 

1st – Tate Plohr, “The Stability of Solar Flares”, LAMS 

Plant Sciences 

2nd – Iris Butcher, “Reveal the Red: Exploring the Chemistry of Red Flower  Pigments.”, LAOLA 

1st – Amelia Hill, “The Effect of Magnetic Fields on Bean Plants”, LAMS 

Microbiology

3rd – Julia Neale, “What’s Growing in my School?”, Barranca 

2nd – Jasper Stauffer, “Mushroom Moisture”, Pinon 

1st – John Fung, “Another Whey: Creating Curd Cultures”, LAMS 

Materials and Bioengineering: 

1st – Antonio Martin-DeVargas, “The Surprising Strength of an Eggshell”, LAOLA 

Environmental Science: 

1st – Aditya Viswanathan, “What are Birds Telling us about Climate Trends?”,  LAMS 

Best of Show for Junior Division – 

Life Science John Fung, LAMS
Physical Science Rebekah Scott, Aspen & Aditya Viswanathan, LAMS

Senior Division Award Winners: 

Chemistry 

HM- Jason Zhao, “Structure Define Property”, LAHS 

Engineering: Electrical and Mechanical 

2nd – Michael Bane, “Optimizing Robotic Crawlers”, LAHS 

1st- Andres Iturregui, “Developing an Autonomous Aerial Package Transport  System”, LAHS 

Environmental Sciences 

1st – Daniel Kim, “Mapping Anthropogenic Ocean Litter with an Autonomous  Underwater Vehicle”, LAHS 

Best of Show for Senior Division –

Physical Science Daniel Kim, LAHS

Special Awards for Junior and Senior Division:

Student Name Amount Organization
Aditya Viswanathan  $30.00 PEEC
Aditya Viswanathan  $25.00 Felden Krais Los Alamos
Aditya Viswanathan  $50.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Aislinn Marshall  $30.00 PEEC
Aislinn Marshall  $25.00 Felden Krais Los Alamos
Aislinn Marshall  $50.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Allison Martinez  $10.00
Amelia Hill  $35.00 Los Alamos Master Gardeners
Andres Trujillo  $10.00 Science Fair Committee
Antonio Martin-DeVargas  $65.00 American Society for Materials  LA Chapter
Astro Saune  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Boden Holmes  $30.00 Pajarito Astronomers
Boden Holmes $40 GC to Gadget  Museum Bradbury Science Museum
Bronze Shrum  $50.00 Los Alamos Symphony  Orchestra
Elliott Work  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Haley Bishofberger  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Harper Van Winkle  $10.00 Science Fair Committee
Iris Butcher  $25.00 Los Alamos Master Gardeners
Iris Butcher  $50.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Jacob Gerber  $10.00 Science Fair Committee
Jasper Stauffer  $30.00 PEEC
Jasper Stauffer  $50.00 Los Alamos Master Gardeners
Jasper Stauffer  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
John Fung  $100.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Lilly-Rose Wrightson/Jelena  Wakefield  $10.00 Science Fair Committee
Linus Plohr  $75.00 American Society for Materials  LA Chapter
Linus Plohr  $50.00 Los Alamos Symphony  Orchestra
Luke Patterson  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
American Society for Materials  Max Wilson $50.00 LA Chapter
Natan Svyatsky $40 GC to Gadget  Museum Bradbury Science Museum
Natan Svyatsky  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Peter Maginot/Alexander  Sandborgh  $10.00 Science Fair Committee
Riley Fensin  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Sarah Haaser  $50.00 Los Alamos Symphony  Orchestra
Sophie Burns  $10.00 Science Fair Committee
Tate Plohr  $30.00 Parjarito Astronomers
Tate Plohr  $50.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Yuiko Yamaguchi $40 GC to Gadget  Museum Bradbury Science Museum
Yuiko Yamaguchi  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Zane Vaughn  $25.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Andres Iturregui $40 GC to Gadget  Museum Bradbury Science Museum
Andres Iturregui $150.00
Daniel Kim  $50.00 PEEC
Daniel Kim $40 GC to Gadget  Museum Bradbury Science Museum
Daniel Kim  $65.00 American Society for Materials  LA Chapter
Daniel Kim  $200.00 Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Jason Zhao  $75.00 American Society for Materials  LA Chapter
Michael Bane $40 GC to Gadget  Museum Bradbury Science Museum
Michael Bane  $50.00 American Society for Materials  LA Chapter
Michael Bane  $150.00



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