Students set for eureka moment ahead of Young Scientist event

Almost 1,150 student exhibitors are preparing to display 550 projects at the RDS

Almost 1,150 student exhibitors are displaying 550 projects at the RDS in Dublin this week for the 2017 BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition.


Energy will be in plentiful supply as the annual BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition begins on Wednesday at the RDS in Dublin.

President Michael D Higgins will be on hand as almost 1,150 student exhibitors get ready to display their work.

There are 550 projects on display this year in the sciences, maths, technology and the social sciences, with these projects in turn shortlisted from an initial pool of more than 2,000 project proposals.

This means that the standards should be higher than ever, according to Shay Walsh, managing director of main sponsor BT.

The quality of the projects on show this year is “extraordinary”, he said. They tackle some of the greatest challenges and opportunities facing society today “from ground-breaking digital tools for people with disabilities to the global migration crisis”, he said.

The students will arrive early on Wednesday to set up their stands, and then head for the BT Arena where at 2pm TG4’s Róisín Ni Thomáin and broadcaster Aidan Power will oversee the official start of the four-day exhibition.

53rd edition

The national institution that is the BT Young Scientist event is now in its 53rd year. It includes 528 projects from the Republic and 22 more from Northern Ireland with 602 girls involved and 540 boys.

All of the students will be hoping to become the Young Scientist for 2017, an accolade that comes with a cheque for €5,000 and a perpetual trophy.

The projects on display break down into four categories, biological and ecological sciences (159 entries this year); chemical, physical and mathematical sciences (95); social and behavioural sciences (204); and technology (92).

Judging continues through Thursday and into Friday, with deliberations on the top four prize-winning projects continuing into Friday afternoon. The announcement of these four projects will come later that evening.

Primary fair

There is a parallel young scientist event taking place at the RDS, the annual RDS Primary Science Fair. This allows pupils in fourth through sixth class to develop and display projects in science, technology, engineering and maths.

Demand for access has been huge, so much so that the RDS last year set up a duplicate event in Limerick and on Thursday, RDS chief executive Michael Duffy will announce a third new venue for the Primary Science Fair.

The BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition opens to the public on Thursday at 9.30am and may also be visited on Friday and Saturday, with the exhibition closing that afternoon.

Tickets are available at the door and cost €6 for students, €12 for adults and €25 for a family pass.

There is also a separate exhibition area that can be toured and a great line-up of live shows including the Ultimate Science Show, Titan the Robot and the Celestial Voyage 3D.

For complete information about the exhibition visit