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News Release 16-043

Big winners in small science challenge take center stage

Award-winning students attract attention of crowd and celebrities Wil Wheaton and Stan Lee at USA Science and Engineering Festival

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Actor, writer and blogger Wil Wheaton hosted the Generation Nanotechnology Awards Ceremony held at the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington on Sunday, April 17, 2016. Wheaton is best known for his roles on the TV series Star Trek: The Next Generation and The Big Bang Theory.

Credit: NSF

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NSF video depicting the creative submission of first place winner Eric Liu from Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia. His Nanoman fights Cancer, the malignant crab monster.

Credit: NSF


NSF video depicting the novel submission from Madeleine Chang from Bergen County Academies in New Jersey who won second prize and the People's Choice Award for Radio Blitz, a hero who casually disposes of local waste.

Credit: NSF


NSF video describing the creative entry from Vuong Mai from Martha Ellen Stilwell School of the Arts in Georgia, who took third place for "Nine." Deriving its name from the scientific notation for nano—10 to the minus 9th power—Nine dons a nanosuit to rescue a kidnapping victim. Once primarily interested in the arts, Mai is rethinking her career choices after being involved in this competition.

Credit: NSF


Legendary superhero creator Stan Lee sent a virtual message to Generation Nanotechnology competition winners that was played at the award ceremony in Washington DC at the USA Science and Engineering Festival on April 17, 2016.

Credit: Stan Lee