Colorado seventh-grader Gitanjali Rao wants to find solutions to real problems, so when she learned about the water crisis in Flint, Michigan on the news, she wanted to help. From Rookie Mag:

After coming across an MIT project that uses nanotechnology to measure harmful levels of gases in the air, she realized that the material was sensitive enough to detect lead in water. She set up a device that sends rapid results to a smartphone over bluetooth…

Rao’s resourceful determination and her lead-in-water detection tool, Tethys, is featured in episode 8 of Google’s documentary series Search On.

Gitanjali Rao
Gitanjali Rao
Rao also won the annual Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge in 2017. Her video explains the project in two minutes:

Learn more about Rao’s work and clean water in this excellent episode of Brains On!, a smart science podcast for kids:

Then watch more videos about problem-solving, solutions, and inventions and inventors, including tents that turn into jackets, turning banana peels into a bioplastic, and The Ocean Cleanup technology, explained.

Plus: Using seawater and sunlight to grow sustainable food in the desert, an innovative edible spoon, this toy-inspired paperfuge, and Think Like a Tree – Problem solving with nature’s best ideas.

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