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Acton Junior High School Students Win 3rd Place In The 2011 Siemens We Can Change The World Challenge!

Sumana Bhat

Vrinda Agarwal, Shilpa Bhat, and Albert Kong, three 8th graders from Acton, MA, won 3rd place in the National Middle School 2011 Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge.  This challenge is organized by the Siemens Foundation, Discovery Education, National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), and the College Board.

The team’s project was to reduce phantom load in the community.  Phantom load is energy wasted when an electronic device is in standby mode, or "off", but still plugged into the outlet and consuming power.  The team, going by the name of “Phantom Slayers,” measured this wastage and educated their school and community about this invisible yet significant energy drain.  The team distributed surveys, pledges, and brochures to gather data and to raise awareness.  They presented their findings to several households, community groups and gatherings, and to their school.  The team convinced Massachusetts State Senator Jamie Eldridge to file a bill aimed at reducing phantom load.  They also met with the EPA to help them request expansion of the Energy Star label to include phantom load.

A link to the team’s proposal can be found at:


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1.gVvALeOxhCmgJuaB October 9, 2012Habebe 
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