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This 11-year-old girl created a device to detect lead levels in water

The young scientist was inspired by the crisis in Flint, Michigan.

October 19, 2017
This 11-year-old girl created a device to detect lead levels in water Andy King/Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge  

According to the Cut, seventh grader Gitanjali Rao invented a device that detects lead in water faster than other detectors currently on the market. The 11-year-old’s invention is called Tethys, and detects lead using carbon nanotube sensors.

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“I had been following the Flint, Michigan, issue for about two years,” Rao told ABC News. “I was appalled by the number of people affected by lead contamination in water and I wanted to do something to change this.”

For her incredible device, Rao has been named “America’s Top Young Scientist” and won a $25,000 prize. After reading about some new technologies used to detect hazardous substances on MIT’s website (casual), she decided to test the process on lead in water. Read more about Rao’s remarkable discovery here.

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This 11-year-old girl created a device to detect lead levels in water