Changing Planet

Google Science Fair 2015: What Will You Try?

The annual Google Science Fair is back, bringing together the biggest ideas and the greatest experiments from young people all around the world, and you are invited to be a part of it.

(Well, as long as you’re between the ages of 13 and 18 and mildly interested in advancing human knowledge and maybe winning a spot on a National Geographic Expedition to the Galápagos Islands.)

A Galapagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki) swims with divers on a National Geographic Expedition. (Photo by Michael S. Nolan)
A Galápagos sea lion (Zalophus wollebaeki) swims with divers on a National Geographic Expedition. (Photo by Michael S. Nolan)

Starting today, you can register, create your project page, and begin your path to exploration and discovery.

National Geographic has been a major partner of the Google Science Fair all five years, and this year, we’re proud to announce that the National Geographic Explorer Award (including the Galápagos trip) will go to the top project in the categories of earth and environmental sciences, flora and fauna, and food sciences.

In previous years, young scientists have competed in these categories with projects trying to reduce the carcinogens in grilled chicken, creating new models for anticipating the impact of dams on wildlife, enhancing solar cells, improving crop yields, and finding greener ways to clean our water (see all previous winners).

TH Culhane has been a GSF judge every year since the fair began. (Photo by Colby Bishop)
TH Culhane has been a GSF judge every year since the fair began. (Photo by Colby Bishop)

Also returning this year is judge and NG Explorer TH Culhane, whose own unbounded energy propels him to develop and spread the word about smart, practical, clean, and sustainable energy production projects in cities everywhere. With his passion for invention, music, education, and creativity being channeled through his incredible enthusiasm and humor, TH is the living embodiment of the thrill that science can bring.

The 2014 Google Science Fair finalists get their moment within the famous yellow border. (Photo by Colby Bishop)
The 2014 Google Science Fair finalists get their moment within the famous yellow border. (Photo by Colby Bishop)

In the coming weeks, Google will be hosing weekly live video Hangouts with GSF team members, NG Explorers and more, including TH Culhane on February 27, and Birgit Buhleier, frequent NG Galápagos Expedition expert, and Crittercam developer on March 6.

TH and Birgit have tried a lot of crazy ideas in their lives. Penty have gone bust, and and a few of them have paid off in big ways—for animals, for communities, for all of us, and for them personally. Science is all about not knowing what will happen until you try out your idea.

So what will you try?

Register for the Google Science Fair

Andrew Howley is a longtime contributor to the National Geographic blog, with a particular focus on archaeology and paleoanthropology generally, and ancient rock art in particular. He is currently beginning a new role as communications director at Adventure Scientists, founded by Nat Geo Explorer Gregg Treinish.Over 11 years at the National Geographic Society, Andrew worked in various ways to share the stories of NG explorers and grantees online. He also produced the Home Page of nationalgeographic.com for several years, and helped manage the Society's Facebook page during its breakout year of 2010.He studied Anthropology with a focus on Archaeology from the College of William & Mary in Virginia. He has covered expeditions with NG Explorers-in-Residence Mike Fay, Enric Sala, and Lee Berger. His personal interests include painting, running, and reading about history.

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