Five Questions with Adyant Bhavsar, winner of the $10,000 Lemelson Award for Invention - Society for Science Skip to content

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Five Questions with Adyant Bhavsar, winner of the $10,000 Lemelson Award for Invention

By Aparna K. Paul

Thirteen-year-old eighth grader Adyant Bhavsar won the $10,000 Lemelson Award for Invention last year, an honor given to a young inventor coming up with a promising product-based solution to real-world issues. Adyant’s research was inspired by his own experience with wildfire evacuation notices during the summer of 2022, which he describes as one of California’s worst wildfire seasons on record.

“A harrowing evacuation notice got me thinking about better ways to continuously power the hundreds of sensors and devices that detect wildfires in remote areas,” says Adyant. “So, I decided to research renewable energy sources. When I first read about triboelectricity and electrostatic induction, I thought I could combine the two and build a reliable power source. Thus, the idea of building a triboelectric nanogenerator was formed.”

Adyant explains that triboelectric nanogenerators are made with two thin, touching objects. When these objects are separated, or slide against each other, electrons transfer between them and cause an electric charge. “I also designed and built a circuit to store this charge incrementally, thus making this triboelectric nanogenerator a self-sufficient power source.” In the coming year, Adyant says he is eager to continue his work on furthering this invention. As a young scientist, his ultimate goal is to improve lives by addressing energy poverty and climate change, inspiring a broader movement toward sustainability for all.

Let’s hear more from Adyant below.

Imagine your legacy echoing through the halls of scientific history like a captivating story. What groundbreaking discovery or innovation would you want the world to remember you for?

I dream of leaving a mark in scientific history with a discovery that fights climate change and safeguards our planet. Imagine a groundbreaking green technology that revolutionizes how we generate energy, making it sustainable for everyone. I want my legacy to be about making a real difference—protecting the Earth and improving lives, especially in communities that need it most. I hope my story inspires others to care for the environment and work towards a brighter, more sustainable future.

When you think back on your 2023 Thermo Fisher JIC experience, what surprised you the most?

What surprised me the most was how amazing everyone’s projects were. The other 29 participants were not only smart but also friendly. It was surprising to see the diverse and impressive ideas each contestant brought to the science fair. The experience made me realize how much talent and creativity there is among young scientists, and it was awesome to be part of such a friendly group.

Can you share a special moment from the competition? What was your most favorite memorable experience from the competition this year?

One truly special moment from this year’s competition that will forever resonate with me was our marine challenge at the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (SERC). At SERC, we built underwater submersibles that we attached GoPros to, and lowered them into Chesapeake Bay. In doing so, we were able to record underwater footage of oyster colonies along the bottom of the bay, as well as some of the wildlife swimming about. It was an incredible moment to watch the footage after our submersible resurfaced, and really fun to find the animals lurking about and compare our data with each other!

Adyant Bhavsar won the 2023 $10,000 Lemelson Award for Invention
Adyant Bhavsar won the 2023 $10,000 Lemelson Award for Invention Society for Science

Create a superhero persona for yourself with STEM-inspired powers. What would your superhero name be, and how would you use your scientific abilities to save the day?

I would like to be called the GreenTech Guardian. I would use my scientific powers to solve real-world environment and sustainability related problems. First, I would replace all fossil fuels energy sources with renewable and reliable sources such as triboelectric nanogenerators, solar, or wind energy. This transition seeks to reduce the overall carbon footprint. Simultaneously, I would intensify reforestation efforts across the globe. Using my eco-empathy power, I would identify and clean up pockets across the world heavily polluted by industrial waste, plastic debris, or other environmental hazards. Subsequently, I would employ clean energy and sustainable resources to restore ecosystems and develop long-lasting tools for the environment. Lastly, I am committed to simplifying learning and providing access to education and STEM resources for everyone across the world—big or small, rich or poor.

If you could join forces with any fictional STEM genius, like a character from a science-themed TV show or movie, who would it be, and what groundbreaking project would you collaborate on?

If I could collaborate with Dr. Emmett Brown from “Back to the Future,” our project would focus on unraveling the mysteries of time and space to explore the vast wonders of the universe. Together, we would develop a groundbreaking time-travel device to venture into different epochs, studying the evolution of galaxies, stars and planets. Our goal would be to gain a deeper understanding of the cosmos, unlocking the secrets of the universe’s birth, its expansion, and the formation of celestial bodies. It would be an awesome journey of scientific exploration and discovery, expanding our knowledge of the cosmos and sparking new perspectives on our place in the universe.

For more information about applying to this year’s Thermo Fisher JIC, visit our Nominee and Eligibility and Important Information pages. You can also email with any questions about the application or competition. Remember, you have nothing to lose by entering, so apply today!


Aparna Paul