Finalists, Mentors and Judges

The 2023 3M Young Scientist Challenge Finalists and State Merit Winners have been announced!

Today’s Innovators

Get to know the diverse personalities of students, 3M Mentors, and others who have contributed their unique talents to the 3M Young Scientist Challenge. Use the tabs below to explore exciting ideas and inspirations from previous years’ challenges.

  • 2023
  • 2022
  • 2021
  • 2020
  • 2019
  • 2018
  • 2017
  • 2016
  • 2015
  • 2014
  • 2013
  • 2012
  • 2011
  • 2010
  • 2009
WinnersFinalistsState Merit WinnersHonorable MentionImproving LivesMentorsJudges
2023 Winner

Heman Bekele

How a Bar of Soap Can Help Cure Cancer Worldwide - Melanoma Treating Soap

Meet Heman. Heman developed Melanoma Treating Soap (MTS), a compound-based bar of soap designed to treat skin cancer.

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2022 Winner

Leanne Fan

Finsen Headphones: Treating Mid-Ear Infections Using Machine Learning and Phototherapy

Leanne developed the Finsen Headphones: Treating Mid-Ear Infections Using Machine Learning and Phototherapy

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2021 Winner

Sarah Park

Spark Care+: Personalized Music Therapy for Mental Health Disorders

Meet Sarah. Sarah developed Spark Care+, a personalized music therapy treatment for mental health disorders using artificial intelligence (AI), galvanic skin response (GSR), and photoplethysmography (PPG).

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2020 Winner

Anika Chebrolu

Combating the COVID-19 Pandemic: In-Silico Molecular Docking Study of Spike Protein of SARS-CoV-2 virus to develop Novel Antiviral drug

Anika used in-silico methodology for drug discovery to find a molecule that can selectively bind to the Spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus in an attempt to find a cure for the COVID-19 pandemic.

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2019 Winner

Kara Fan

Nano Particle Wound Care

Kara formulated a nano particle liquid bandage to replace the use of antibiotics and help reduce the development of super bugs due to overuse of antibiotics.

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2018 Winner

Rishab Jain

Pancreatic Cancer Deep Learning System: A novel Tool for Improved Image-Guided Radiotherapy (IGRT) through Automated Pancreas Segmentation

Rishab created a method that uses artificial intelligence to help accurately locate the pancreas during MRI radiotherapy and make cancer treatment more effective.

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2017 Winner

Gitanjali Rao

"Tethys": Water Lead Contamination Detector

Gitanjali hopes to reduce the time of lead detection in water by using a mobile app, to connect over Bluetooth to get status of water, almost immediately.

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2016 Winner

Maanasa Mendu

Enhancing Wind Power

Meet Maanasa. Maanasa hopes her invention helps make wind power a globally applicable energy source. She created a device utilizing piezoelectricity materials that are both eco-friendly and cost efficient.

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2015 Winner

Hannah Herbst

The Ocean Energy Probe

Meet Hannah. Hannah’s Ocean Energy Probe aims to provide a stable power source and fresh water to developing countries around the globe by using untapped energy from ocean currents. The energy is stored in a generator, and then can be harnessed for many uses, including the desalinization of water.

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2014 Winner

Sahil Doshi

PolluCell: Using Waster Materials and Pollution to Generate Electricity

Sahil entered the competition because he loves science and he wanted to get to know others who shared similar interests. His battery cell invention will use carbon dioxide and other waste materials to help clear the atmosphere from greenhouse gas emissions and, additionally, be a low-cost alternative for electricity in developing countries.

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2013 Winner

Peyton Robertson

Salt Water Sandless Sandbag

Peyton’s invention of a more efficient sandbag to reduce salt water flood damage captured our judges’ attention.

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2012 Winner

Deepika Karup

Photocatalytic Rod for Green and Sustainable Water Purification

Deepika created a cost effective and sustainable water-purification system which harnesses solar energy to disinfect contaminated water.

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