Project Information

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Project Categories at the Regional Fair

Students entering the fair complete a project in one of the following categories. Click on the category name for a detailed description.

Types of Projects

• Experiment

    A project of this nature involves an original scientific experiment to test a specific hypothesis in which the student recognizes and controls all significant competing variables and demonstrates collection, analysis, and presentation of data.

• Study

    A study includes a collection and analysis of data to reveal evidence of a fact or a situation of scientific interest. It could include a study of cause and effect relationships involving ecological, social, political or economic considerations or theoretical investigations of scientific data.

• Innovation

    Innovation projects involve the development and evaluation of innovative devices, models, techniques or approaches in fields such as technology, engineering, or computers (both hardware and software).

Safety and Ethics

All projects are subject to specific Safety and Ethics rules that are set by the Canada Wide Science Fair organization. The rules and regulations are particularly important for any project that involves human or animal subjects, firearms, hazardous materials or DNA. These policies should be reviewed and the student should ensure that the project meets all policy rules to be eligible for participation in the science fair. Failure to meet these policies will prevent you from participation in the science fair. Please review these regulations very carefully before the day-of-fair.
Click on the appropriate link for more information –> Safety and Ethics

Project Displays:

All participants should review the complete requirements for project displays found by clicking on the link –> Safety

  1. Exhibits and accessories must sit on a table supplied by FLASF and must not exceed 80 cm from front to back, 120 cm from side to side and 225 cm in height from the table top. All measurements must be made from the outermost points including framework and appendages and will be checked by the safety committee. All display items that you place on the table must also fit within these dimensions. Exhibits exceeding these dimensions will not be accepted.
  2. Exhibits must be sturdy and self-supporting; adjacent walls may not be used for support. Moving parts must be firmly attached and approved for safety.
  3. Glue all paper flat to the backboard, or tape all edges. Do not hang a collection of papers; if you have extra papers, put them in a binder.
  4. If requested in your on-line registration, access to one electrical outlet supplying AC110 volt 60 cycle will be made available (you MUST identify this need in your on-line registration!), but exhibitors should bring their own good quality (CSA approved) and in good repair extension cord. No gas or water outlets will be available. Switches and cords must be the approved variety. Cell or battery-fed circuits should be safe in design and operation.
  5. All equipment, except display tables, must be supplied by the exhibitor.

Pre-Fair Report (Summary)
A pre-fair report (summary) must be prepared and included in your registration to participate in the science fair. The Pre-Fair Report (summary) will provide the judges with summary information about your project. Judges will be able to review your Pre-Fair Report before they judge your project and will therefore be better prepared to ask you questions during the presentation of your project.

NOTE: If your observations and/or conclusions are not completed by the registration deadline, you may state that in your Pre-Fair Report and present the final information to the judges at the fair. The Pre-Fair Report MUST be completed in order to complete your on-line registration.

The pre-fair report / summary should give a brief description of the project. When submitting this summary on-line, it will have to be between 200 and 500 words. The following outline is suggested:

  • Title:                     A catchy, clever title that gives an accurate description of your project
  • Paragraph #1:     Introduction and Purpose of the experiment (background). Include your                                        Hypothesis or Question
  • Paragraph #2:     Procedures including materials and methods (at least for an experimental                                    project).
  • Paragraph #3:     Results and Conclusion

The following three sample pre-fair reports / summaries can be used to help you prepare one for your own project (Please note that the projects outlined are only hypothetical and that the protocol followed and data obtained may not be realistic). The level of complexity in the project and the summary report should be appropriate for the age group that you are competing in.

cRUSTY NAILS!

The purpose of my experiment was to find out if salt water rusts nails faster than freshwater and which type of nails, galvanized or common, will rust more quickly. I suspected that salt water would be more damaging to a nail and that galvanized nails would be more resistant to corrosion in comparison to a common nail. I have read that air in the water is important in affecting rust so I included this variable in my project. The procedure I used involved sanding forty galvanized and common nails and placing them in glass jars that had 150mL of water (twenty in tap water and twenty in tap water that had been boiled to remove the air and then cooled). In half of the jars, the water was mixed with 15mL of salt. The nails were left in the solutions and the changes in appearance of the nails were observed. After two weeks, the amount of rust was recorded on both types of nails in each of the four types of solutions. I observed that the rusting colour of the nails was black and that both the galvanized and common nails had a higher amount of rust in water that had not been boiled than the nails in water that had been boiled. The experiments comparing the difference in rusting behaviour between fresh water and salt water were not completed when this report was submitted, but their results will be presented at the fair. In conclusion the nails in water that contained oxygen rusted more than the nails in water that had been deoxygenated.

THE EFFECT OF MOTOR OIL ON DAPHNIA MAGNA

The purpose of my project was to model how motor oil released to a lake impacts the organisms that live there. Whole effluent toxicity (WET) testing is used by regulatory agencies to determine how clean an effluent must be before release to the environment. In a WET test, aquatic animals are exposed to an effluent to determine if the effluent harms the animals.

I conducted eight experiments using the organism Daphnia magna (a freshwater water flea). I added oxygenated, dechlorinated water to sample containers and then added varying concentrations of motor oil. For each experiment, two replicates were prepared. To each sample, I added Daphnia magna and then recorded the number of organisms that were still alive after 24 and 48 hours.

To check my approach, I conducted two control experiments using NaCl in the water since the response of Daphnia magna to salinity is known. When the Daphnia magna reacted as expected, I then tested motor oil at concentrations of 0.2% and higher. At this concentration, all the Daphnia magna neonates quickly died, so I needed to reduce the amount of motor oil. I repeated the work at different motor oil concentrations, down to 0.00017%. Using data from duplicate tests, I prepared a graph of motor oil concentration vs. Daphnia magna survival rate which revealed a motor oil LC50 (lethal dose to kill half the organisms) of 30 mg/l. This very low concentration confirms how only a little bit of oil can cause serious damage to the environment.

ACID ATTACK !

The study was designed in an effort to determine the effect of acid rain on plant growth. It is hypothesized that plants treated with an acidic solution will display slowed or even inhibited growth as compared to control plants which were not treated with an acidic solution.

40 bean seeds were planted in separate pots. 20 plants did not receive any acidic treatment and served as a control group. Of the remaining 20 plants, 10 were treated to an acidic treatment of a 0.4 M solution of hydrochloric acid (HCl) twice a week. The final 10 plants were treated to an acidic treatment of a 0.4 M HCl every two weeks. All plants received identical nutrient solutions and were allowed to grow under similar lighting conditions. The experimental period was 10 weeks and the effects of acid treatment were gauged by measuring the rate of plant growth with time.

At the end of the 10 week period, the impact of the acid treatment on plant growth was obvious. The average height of the 20 control plants was 32.4 cm with a standard deviation of ± 3.2 cm. The average height of the 10 experimental plants that received twice weekly treatments 12.3 ± 6.1 cm. The average height of the 10 experimental plants that received acid treatment every two weeks 20.9 ± 4.7 cm. Seeds that did not give rise to any plant growth were not included in these averages but were compared between groups. There were 2 unsuccessful seeds in the control group as compared to 4 in the first experimental group and 3 in the second experimental group. The average growth rates during the 10 week period of the different groups were also compared and demonstrated a trend similar to that of the final plant heights. All measured and calculated values obtained in this work can be found in Table 2 in the report.

From these results, it has been concluded that acidic treatment negatively affects plant growth. The prominence of these effects seems to be related to the amount or at least the frequency of the acid treatment. These results can used to help determine the effects of environmental sources of acid, such as acid rain, on surrounding vegetation. Acid rain is undoubtedly an important environmental concern and this project helps to quantify the possible effects acid rain can have on present and future plant growth.

Contact Us:
If you have any questions about your pre-fair report or project, ask the student coordinator at students For a complete list of FLASF contacts, see Contact Us