Biochar in the 2013 White House Science Fair

Erin Rasmussen

Meghana Rao attends Jesuit High School and spoke to President Obama about Biochar in the 2013 White House Science Fair

From Tom Miles:
John Miedema and I have been mentoring her biochar projects for about three years. She did her basic research as a high school freshman at Oregon State University under Dr. Markus Kleber with a graduate student in soil science. She won regional competitions and went to the nationals in the Intel Science competitions as a Freshman. She presented that work in Kyoto in 2011 and at Sonoma 2012. That is also the work she described to the President.

Last summer she did an internship at the Joint Bioenergy Institute at Berkeley.

This year she wanted to work on the superconductor properties of biochar. Stephen Joseph and Saran Sohi (UKBC), who heard her presentation in Kyoto, helped us locate the two or three institutions working on that internationally but they all said that they couldn’t work with her due to IP obligations. Because of her previous credentials, in interview and a proposal, Dr. Hong Liu at OSU agreed to let her do a project in her lab on using biochar as a cathode for microbial fuel cells. That project has again taken her into the national finals of the Intel Science competition in May.

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