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Lalita Prasida Sripada, a 13-year-old schoolgirl from Odisha, has bagged the Community Impact Award at the Google Science Fair 2015.Her project is a low cost bio-absorbent water purifier that cleans waste water by flowing it through different layers of corn cobs made up of long pieces of corn cobs, small pieces of corn cobs, powdered corn cobs, activated charcoal made from corn cobs and fine sand.According to Lalita, it can be used for “immobilising the contaminants in domestic and industrial effluents, and in ponds, reservoirs and water tanks.” And her study “was designed to control and check water pollution from domestic and industrial sources by using an agricultural waste.A reason she chose corn was because every part of the corn plant is utilised except the cob and this kept the technique cost-effective.Lalita is a Class IX student at Delhi Public School, Damanjodi, a small town in Odisha’s Koraput district. She says her inspiration is Dr MS Swaminathan, the father of the Green Revolution in India.Lalita is the only winner from India at the Google Science Fair 2015.The Community Impact Award that Lalita won is awarded to a project that makes a practical difference in the participant’s community by addressing an environmental, health or resources challenge. Lalita has won $10,000 in funding and a year-long mentorship from Scientific American.
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