Three brilliant young inventors have won the National TeenTech awards with a life saving invention which could make them a fortune.
The Loreto Grammar School Year Nine pupils beat teams from 450 different schools with the prototype for a blood glucose monitoring device aimed at improving the life chances of diabetics worldwide.
Sarah Griffin, 14, from Altrincham; JessicaTaylor 14, from Altrincham and Sophie Kelly, 14, from Sale, have wowed Britain's science community, receiving their prizes from Prince Andrew at a special ceremony at Buckingham Palace.
The girls impressed judges including Professor Brian Cox, top theoretical physicist Jim Al-Khalili and BBC science correspondent Rory Cellan-Jones to win in three categories for 'International Collaboration', “Healthcare' and the top overall award.
The key to their success said Loreto Grammar School Mathematics teacher Elaine Manton 'was a forensic examination of the project from every angle covering market research, product design and development and the potential for marketing’.
Organised by TeenTech as part of a national drive to promote the STEM subjects, Science, Engineering, Mathematics and Technology, the competition asks gifted pupils to conceive, design, develop and market an original product ready for the market place.
“The first step,” said Sarah, who has ambitions to become a facial plastic surgeon, 'was to identify a gap in the market place. There are blood glucose monitoring devices, but they are too bulky.”
Jessica, who wants to study psychoanalysis and forensic science, added: “We then had to discuss our ideas with some of Britain top engineers and were grateful to be able to liaise with the research and development team at Airbus industries.”
Sophie, who is interested in studying both sociology and philosophy, added: “It was essential to talk to those who might use the device and to get some detailed feedback from the medical profession.”
The girls worked on the project for four months, spending all their available lunchtimes, putting together their entry, being given special dispensation to work on the project in mathematics lessons and then furiously emailing each other in the evenings as they perfected their submission.
Elaine Manton said: “I have beena teacher for20 years and have never seen such innovative and detailed work. Their submission blew the judges out of the water, winning the plaudits of many of Britain's top scientists and broadcasters.”
The trio are to appear on Breakfast TV and are being interviewed by the national media. The girls win digital photo frames and £1,000 for the school, but said: “We are not interested in the rewards, we are genuinely interested in the project and getting the product to the market place.”
Elaine Manton added: “Britain needs the next generation of young inventors to stand up and make their mark in the world and we are all incredibly proud of Sophie, Sarah and Jessicafor their wonderful work.”