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The winner of the BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Award has taken home top prize and US$75,000 at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF).

19-year old Oliver Nicholls, from Barker College in Sydney, secured the win with his fully-autonomous robotic window cleaner designed to reduce human injury and decrease the costs of window cleaning on medium rise commercial buildings. The small robotic device uses drones, motors and propellers to navigate building facades and clean windows using water and micro-fibre scrubbers.

Five of the 2018 BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Awards finalists attending the awards secured a total of 11 major award wins in a field of over 1,800 high school students from 75 countries.

Oliver was among several other BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Award finalists attending Intel ISEF as part of the BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Awards Australian delegation and Science Teachers of New South Wales’ Young Scientist delegation.

BHP Billiton Foundation Executive Director, James Ensor, hopes that seeing Australian high school students winning at an international level would inspire others to pursue independent research projects.

“Studying STEM topics fosters innovative thinking and problem solving abilities that will help to address sustainable development challenges. We believe that by supporting STEM education and achievement in young people, we are investing in Australia’s future problem solvers.” he said.

Read more about the finalists of the BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Awards.

Australian student submissions for the next BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Awards are due in October.

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