11-year-old girl develops technology to test for lead in water, wins Young Scientist Challenge

(CBS 58) – An 11-year-old Colorado girl is making a big difference in the world, working to make sure everyone’s water is safe to drink.

“When I saw my parents shipping our water out to the EPA, I thought ‘whoa, this is not a reliable process. So I really wanted to do something to not only help my parents, but also the residents of Flint and places like Flint around the world,” says Gitanjali Rao.

Rao designed nanotechnology to detect lead in the water.

The device sends the data to a smartphone making it easy to tell if it’s safe to drink.

 “There were over 5,000 water systems in the U.S. alone with lead contamination. Imagine how much it would be worldwide,” says Rao.

Rao has been announced the winner of the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge. She was awarded the title of "America's Top Young Scientist" as well as a $25,000 prize. 

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