Monte Vista, Colorado, 7th Grader, Takes First Place in Regional Science Fair With Radon Level Monitoring Project in Colorado Schools
Ecosense supplied its EcoQube S and RadonEye Pro continuous radon monitors to winning student Parker Mitchell, to complete his science project for the 2023 San Luis Valley Regional Science Fair, Colorado.uU
Updated on May 4, 2023*
San Jose, California - March 8, 2023 - Ecosense, a leader and trusted provider of radon detection and continuous radon monitoring solutions that are easy to use, accurate, and fast, recently supported Parker Mitchell, a student from Sargent Elementary in Monte Vista, CO, in his science project to monitor radon levels in his school and neighboring schools in Colorado. Ecosense allocated 50 units of its EcoQube S monitors to conduct the study in four school buildings in the San Luis Valley district.
Additionally, the company provided four RadonEye Pro professional-grade certified devices for quality validation, with two installed in each building. After comparing the average radon levels using the data from all detectors, Parker concluded that EcoQube S readings were very close to the professional test results he got from RadonEye Pro units.
"We're thrilled to have supported Parker in his project to monitor radon levels in his school district. Testing in schools is important because kids are more vulnerable to radon, and his project is a great contribution to radon awareness," said Insoo Park, Founder, and CEO of Ecosense.
"His curiosity, hard work, and dedication to science and technology are an inspiration to us all, and we're proud to have been a part of his success. Ecosense is committed to supporting the education of future leaders in science and technology and will continue to support initiatives that encourage young students like Parker to explore and discover the world around them."
Parker’s home had shown high radon levels, and his family came to understand how dangerous the situation could be. Due to being in the same neighborhood, Parker wanted to explore not only his health and safety but all students' health and safety were in danger while learning. Parker's science teacher helped him set up the devices in the schools, and Ecosense provided instructions and training sessions on how to set up and connect them to the web dashboard. Multiple EcoQube S monitors were connected to the EcoGuard dashboard, on average 25 units for each building, to monitor all devices in one screen as a network. After completing the study in the first two buildings that were located nearby, the devices were moved to two more school buildings in the districts for further analysis.
With the help of the Ecosense team, Parker reviewed the sample material and analyzed the radon data for his project. He presented his findings on February 15th and won 1st Place in Earth and Space Sciences at the 2023 San Luis Valley Regional Science Fair.
*In addition to his participation in the Colorado State Science Fair 2023, Parker has received accolades for his exceptional use of statistical analysis in a project, earning an award from the American Statistical Association. His dedication to researching environmental health has also been recognized by the Colorado Environmental Health Association, who bestowed upon him a distinguished award.
Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas found in soil, rocks, and water. It can enter buildings through cracks and gaps in the foundation and accumulate to dangerous levels over time. Radon is the number one cause of lung cancer among nonsmokers. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommends that homes and schools be tested for radon and that action be taken to Reduce Radon Levels if They Exceed 4 pCi/L. By supporting Parker's project to monitor radon levels in local schools, Ecosense is helping to raise awareness of this important health issue and promote safer environments for students and staff.
Although Parker didn’t detect radon levels higher than the recommended action levels, he found out that there are many factors that cause radon fluctuations and was able to see it during his study, such as temperature changes, type of building foundation, air handling system, and ventilation.
Radon is a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas that can pose a serious health risk if left undetected. Long-term exposure to high levels of radon can increase the risk of lung cancer, and it is estimated that radon causes thousands of lung cancer deaths in the United States each year. Given that many people spend the majority of their time indoors, it is critical to monitor for radon in homes, schools, and other buildings to ensure that occupants are not exposed to dangerous levels of radon. By supporting projects like Parker Mitchell’s, which aim to raise awareness of radon and promote better monitoring practices, Ecosense is helping to improve public health and safety.