The amazing thing about kids is their ability to imagine possibilities. Too many times, kids are told that they can’t, not to make a mess or that they’re too young. But sometimes those messes in the garages or even their parent’s workplace might turn into something extraordinary. We found seven kids, from 9 to 19, who have already produced great things.
1. Sleeping on Air
The 19-year-old reddit user mememetatata is floating in his sleep thanks to his hovering bed, which he made using 10 puck-sized neodynium magnets and wood. He positioned five magnets in the base and five in the bed itself so the magnets repel each other, causing the bed to remain stable in the air. The bed can hold up to 250 pounds and keeps the sleeper stable.
2. Cure Research Stems From Ideas
Angela Zhang, a 17-year-old high school senior, envisioned a new technique that could be used to treat cancer. Her idea won the $100,000 Math, Science & Technology grand prize at the 2011 Siemens Competition. One of the competition judges called Angela’s invention the “Swiss army knife of cancer treatment” because the gold and iron oxide-based nanoparticle can function two ways. Angela’s invention can be used in non-invasive imaging as well as to administer a drug called salinomycin into a tumor, targeting the cancer stem cells directly.
Dr. Zhen Cheng of Stanford University mentored Angela during the 1,000 hours she spent on her idea since 2009. It’s no surprise that Angela plans to major in chemical engineering, biomedical engineering or physics when she goes on to post-secondary education.
3. Shooting for the Moon
One small step for Lego-man, one giant step for Lego-kind. Mathew Ho and Asad Muhammad of Canada boldly sent a Lego astronaut where no Lego man has gone before — into the Earth’s atmosphere. The pair of 17-year-old rocket scientists attached a video camera to their spacecraft, fashioned using a helium weather balloon, to document the heroic excursion of their tiny Lego astronaut.
Before takeoff, they gave their Lego astronaut a Canadian flag to claim the lunar surface and sent him on his way. The flight reached a height of 80,000 feet before safely descending by way of a parachute. A GPS receiver ensured that the Lego astronaut made it home safely.
4. Playing Games Adds Up
A 16-year-old created a working graphing calculator from scratch, using the video game Minecraft. How’s that for an argument for getting to play video games?
Minecraft lets you create whatever you can think up using blocks of different types. This young player utilized exceedingly complicated techniques to create a calculator including a massive keypad and a three-dimensional screen. It can be used to perform addition, subtraction, multiplication and division problems and more complex functions like square roots.
5. Potential Without Hiccups
Finally, a cure for hiccups. 13-year-old genius tycoon Mallory Kievman developed lollipops that she says can stop hiccups. Hiccupops, as they’re called, were developed in a trial-and-error fashion. Mallory tried more than 100 remedies before she developed the apple-cider-vinegar-and-sugar formula.
She won top honors for innovation and patentability at the Connecticut Invention Convention last spring. As a result, the patent for Hiccupops was filed on her behalf. The patent is currently pending while a team of business students from the University of Connecticut helps her ready the candy for sale. Hiccupops will hopefully be on the market this summer.