2019 Winners


The Samueli Foundation Prize: $25,000

Winner: Alaina Gassler

Project: Improving Automobile Safety by Removing Blindspots

Alaina Gassler, 14, West Grove, Pennsylvania, won the $25,000 Samueli Foundation Prize, for her project reducing blind spots in cars and her exemplary performance during the Broadcom MASTERS’s hands-on challenges. The prize is a gift of Dr. Henry Samueli, Chairman of the Board, Broadcom Inc., and Chair of the Broadcom Foundation and his wife, Dr. Susan Samueli, President of the Samueli Foundation.

Lemelson Award for Invention: $10,000

Winner: Rachel Bergey

Project: Spotted Lanternflies: Stick’em or Trick’em

Rachel Bergey, 14, Harleysville, Pennsylvania, won the $10,000 Lemelson Award for Invention, awarded by The Lemelson Foundation to a young inventor creating promising solutions to real-world problems. Rachel developed a trap made of tinfoil and netting for the Spotted Lanternfly, an invasive species causing damage to trees in Pennsylvania.

Marconi/Samueli Award for Innovation: $10,000

Winner: Sidor Clare

Project: Bound and Bricked

Sidor Clare, 14, Sandy, Utah, won the $10,000 Marconi/Samueli Award for Innovation, an honor made possible by Samueli’s generous donation of his 2012 Marconi Society Prize Award.  Sidor developed bricks that could one day be made on Mars, so that humans would not be required to bring building materials with us in order to build there.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Advancement: $10,000

Winner: Alexis MacAvoy

Project: Designing Efficient, Low-Cost, Eco-Friendly Activated Carbon for Removal of Heavy Metals from Water

Alexis MacAvoy, 14, Hillsborough, California, won the $10,000 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Award for Health Advancement, which recognizes the student whose work and performance shows the most promise in health-related fields and demonstrates an understanding of the many social factors that affect health. Alexis designed a water filter using carbon to remove heavy metals from water.

STEM Talent Award, sponsored by DoD STEM: $10,000

Winner: Lauren Ejiaga

Project: Ozone Depletion: How it Affects Us

Lauren Ejiaga, 14, New Orleans, Louisiana, won the $10,000 STEM Talent Award, sponsored by DoD STEM, for demonstrating excellence in science, technology, engineering or math, along with the leadership and technical skills necessary to excel in the 21st Century STEM workforce and build a better community for tomorrow. Lauren’s research focused on how current levels of ultraviolet light from the sun due to ozone depletion impacts plant growth and performance.

STEM Award Winners

First and second place winners of STEM Awards demonstrated acumen and promise in science, technology, engineering and math. First place winners were awarded $3,500 and second place winners receive $2,500 to support his or her choice of a STEM summer camp experience in the U.S. Each STEM Award winner also received an iPad. Top awards in math were sponsored by Robert John Floe, President, Floe Financial Partners.

Science Award

First place: Ruhi YusufEffectiveness of Different Plants as Coagulants to Purify Contaminated Drinking Water

Second place: Tyler BissoondialIdentification and Characterization of Salt-Tolerant (stl) Mutants in Raphanus sativus

Technology Award

First place: Kassie HoltBound and Bricked

Second place: Rishab JainThe Pancreas Detective: A Novel Artificial-Intelligence-Based Post-Biopsy Tool to Screen Genetic Mutations Towards Personalizing Pancreatic Cancer Treatment

Engineering Award

First place: Rylan GardnerStall/Spin Recovery Via Increased Lift and Upwards Pitching Moment Using the Magnus Effect

Second place: Mercedes RandhahnOpioid-Like Deactivation


Mathematics Award

First place: Isabelle KatzAnalyzing Musical Instruments/Voice Using Signal Analysis and A Novel Color-Fingerprinting Technique for Vocal Training

Second place: Johan DeMessieSalt-Stain Effect for a Rapid, Low-Cost Analysis of Drinking Water

Rising Stars Award

In recognition of their promise as two of the youngest competitors, two Rising Stars win a trip to Anaheim, California in May 2020 as the United States delegate to Broadcom MASTERS International and Official Observer at International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF), the world’s largest international high school science fair competition.

Mary Shea BallantineAutomotive Exhaust: Creating a Selective Environment for Bacteria


Kyle Tianshi, A Microscopic Particle Detector Using Laser Microscopy and Image Processing


Team Award

Each member of the team that best demonstrates their ability to work together and solve problems through shared decision making, communication and scientific and engineering collaboration will receive a gift card to a science supply company to support their interests in STEM.

Green Team: Lauren U.C. Ejiaga, Kassie Holt, Alexis Tea MacAvoy, Ashwin Prabhakar and Kyle Tianshi

Scott A. McGregor Leadership Award:

Finalists select one student from the group based on their leadership abilities to represent their class as a speaker at the awards ceremony.

David AnandMonitoring water quality of the Yellow Creek Watershed using macro-invertebrate sampling and automated continuous testing with a DIY microcontroller for physical and chemical measurements

2019 Broadcom MASTERS finalists
Name Hometown Project
ISHAN AHLUWALIA Portland, Oregon A Real-Time System for Detecting Tire-Road Friction in Different Weather Conditions Using Dynamic Time Warping
MADILYNE KAY BEAUDRY Ogden, Utah Bioplastic Development; Yielding Lactic Acid Using Compost
ANISH SRIRAM BHETHANABOTLA San Jose, California AI EYE: Navigation Aid for the Visually Impaired
RYLAN EDWARD COLBERT Hilo, Hawaii Icequakes
AKSHAR COWLAGI Ann Arbor, Michigan Not All That Is Yellow Is Turmeric: Designing Analytical Chemistry Methods and Photometric Circuitry to Detect Lead Chromate Adulteration of Turmeric
JOSHUA W. COX Delaware, Ohio Lift Off! Finding Rockets Using Sound Waves
AMELIA BELLE CURRAN Indialantic, Florida Comparing the Efficiency, Free Fatty Acid Percentage, and Carbon Dioxide Emissions of Waste Vegetable Oil (WVO) and Ethiopian Mustard (Brassica carinata) Biodiesels
RICHARD ZILUN DENG Portland, Oregon Quantum Motions and Emotions for a Humanoid Robot Actor
PAULINE VICTORIA ALLASAS ESTRADA Fresno, California Real-Time Detection of Drought Stress in Plants Using a Custom-Built Infrared Sensing Rover
ANITA GAENKO Ann Arbor, Michigan Not All That Is Yellow Is Turmeric: Designing Analytical Chemistry Methods and Photometric Circuitry to Detect Lead Chromate Adulteration of Turmeric
ABHIJEET GHOSH Marietta, Georgia Recycling with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotics
VIVAANA YASHASVI HAVAL Charlotte, North Carolina Repurposing Agro-Industrial Wastes to Increase Lipid Production from Scenedesmus dimorphus as a Sustainable Biofuel Feedstock
RYAN HONARY Huntington Beach, California A Machine Learning Driven IOT Sensor Network for Early Detection and Growth Prediction of Wildfires/COVID19
SHELBY SCOUT HOOBLER Cheyenne, Wyoming Leave it to Beaver Dam Analogs…To Change Soil Moisture
SINA SEAN KASSAYAN Menlo Park, California Biometric Authentication in a Heartbeat: An Artificial Intelligence Deep Learning-Based Heart Sound Authentication System
LUCAS SEBASTIAN KATZ Moraga, California A Spherical Omnidirectional Motor for Electric Vehicles
ISHANA REMYA KUMAR Chappaqua, New York Color Is in the Eye of the Beholder: The Role of Retinal Fatigue on Imaginary Fechner Colors
CHARLOTTE LENORE SIMON MICHALUK Pennington, New Jersey Simulating Slipping Snails: Mitigating Climate Change and Oceanborne Invasive Species Transport with Biomimicry
SNIGTHA MOHANRAJ Hamden, Connecticut Effectiveness of the Organic Polymers for Removing Microplastic in an Aqueous Solution
JOHN TOMAS MULVIHILL Chandler, Arizona Designing a Football Helmet Lining and Coating for Maximum Rotational and Linear Impact Force Reduction
JULIAN OLSCHWANG Los Angeles, California Talk to the Hand
ANIKA PALLAPOTHU San Jose, California Predict Using AI: Diagnosing of Diabetic Eye Diseases Using Convolutional Neural Networks for Computer Vision
ELISE ANGELI RINA Orlando, Florida Access Granted
LOGAN WILLIAM SILVEA Melbourne, Florida Correlation Between Interocular Signal Delay and Luminosity, Measured Through the Perceived Intensity of the Pulfrich Effect, Noting the Impact of Ocular Dominance (2 Year Study — Psychological Adaptations and Optical Illusions)
SEBASTIAN PEARCE SKIDMORE Birmingham, Alabama Vinegar and Soil: Soil Acidification Improves Growth in Simulated Martian Soil
JOANNA LEE SOHN San Antonio, Texas The Effect of Probiotics and Metformin on C. elegans After Treatment in a Hypoxia Chamber: Year II
AGASTYA SRIDHARAN San Diego, California Quantifying the Impact of Search-Order Bias on Voting Preferences Using a Simulated Web Environment
KAI AVERY VERNOOY Niskayuna, New York Hacking the Election: Measuring and Solving Gerrymandering in Today’s Political System
ZOE ELANA WEISSMAN Plantation, Florida Testing Phytochemicals for Antinociceptive Properties in Both Female and Male Drosophila melanogaster in Order to Discover a Natural Painkiller and Reduce Bias in the Drug Industry
ANGELA ZHAN Logan, Utah Discovery of Novel Soil Microbes for Efficient Plastic Degradation