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How about automatically heated nanomaterials, bracelet for monitoring one’s biological nutritional stats, a tracking device for lost objects – or a water-repellent headscarf?

The NanoDiode project is delighted to announce the winners of its Competition for innovative ideas! In the competition, NanoDiode asked the participants to take a look at current nanotechnology innovations developed across Europe and then come up with their own innovative ideas on how nanotechnologies could shape our societies and contribute to a better, sustainable European future.

In autumn 2014, over 50 European youngsters took part in the competition. After public voting on NanoDiode website, an expert jury of artists, researchers, CSO and industry representatives picked their favourites – for the final results, the public and jury votes were counted together. All ideas and jury comments can be viewed on  NanoDiode’s competition webpage.

NT BraceletNanonanasBasquiat 99.1Nano-Brunnen

The winner of the competition was Rodrigo García Ferreriro from the Colegio Corazón de María in Gijón – Asturias, Spain with his idea of “Automatically heated nanomaterials – materials that absorb sunlight, store its energy and release it as heat according to the user’s needs. Rodrigo’s contribution was thanked for its originality, personality and broad usability:

Rodrigo’s idea is an original one and does not only reflect current uses of nanomaterials. He also delightfully connects innovative technologies to an everyday problem he himself has experienced.”- Koert van Mensvoort, Director, Next Nature Network, Expert jury member

As a jury member I used the assessment criteria of innovativeness, user-friendliness, multi-usability and ethics. Rodrigo’s idea fulfils these criteria and could be used in multiple ways – the only challenge is now the technical realisation of it.“- Pieter van Broekhuizen, IVAM UvA, Project Coordinator NanoDiode, Expert jury member

The second prize of the competition was shared by

Serena Della Rossa from Liceo Scientifico G. Marinelli in Udine, Italy with the “NT Bracelet” for the monitoring of body stats,

Pablo Peña Suárez, also from Colegio Corazón de María in Gijón – Asturias, Spain with his “Nano ID+” tracking device and

Edanur Demirsoy, Funda Coban, Ozora Thayalan, Diellza Aslani & Fercan Ferli from the Herbert-Hoover-Schule in Stuttgart, Germany with the “Nano-Headscarf: Swimming without getting wet.

Serena, Pablo as well as the Stuttgarter girls were all thanked for the way they adapted existing or upcoming innovations to everyday problems of consumers. Serena’s idea links to lab-on-a-chip –devices and Pablo’s to innovations related to the “internet of things”, whereas

The idea about the headscarf is interesting because it is not about inventing new technologies but about using existing technologies in a new field, to a social problem that perhaps wasn’t in the scientists’ thoughts initially. The girls informed themselves about a technology, realised a problem and came up with an application.”  -Hannie van den Bergh, Studio HB, NanoDiode Consortium

Serena, Pablo, Edanur, Funda, Ozora, Diellza & Fercan were all be awared with trips to NanoDiode dialogues or with laboratory visits in their home countries. In addition to the individual prizes, the Herbert-Hoover-Schule in Stuttgart, Germany as well as the I.I.S. Caterina da Siena in Milan, Italy were awarded for their broad participation with the NanoSchoolBox, containing exciting nanotechnology do-it-yourself experiments for the entire class.

Videoclip: winner Rodrigo García Ferreriro visits Amolf Amsterdam.


Within NanoDiode, the competition represented an example of involving a specific group in the societal discussion of nanotechnology development. In this sense, NanoDiode evaluated it as a case study of public involvement:

In the competiton, all participants were able to think of ways nanotechnologies could contribute to the society. They addressed both their everyday problems and broad societal needs: their ideas were explicitly linked to issues such as health, hunger, lack of drinking water or societal accessibility. The ideas confirm that the competition succeeded in inspiring the participants on the possibilities of nanotechnologies. The public voting further increased NanoDiode’s visibility as the project website was frequented by new visitors – this way the competition introduced both the project and nanotechnologies in general to new audiences.

Please click here for the full report of NanoDiode’s School kids’ and students’ competition for innovative ideas