The State-level winners will receive cash awards and a chance to showcase their projects at the 25th session of the Kerala Science Congress.

“Our school did not have provision of purified drinking water, so we decided to solve the problem and came up with a water purifier that works on solar energy,”10-year-old Anjali Peter, student of Government UP School Varadiyam, Thrissur, said.

The project earned a place among the 68 projects competing for the Kerala edition of the 20th National Children’s Science Congress (NCSC) that began here on Monday.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy inaugurated the congress, organised by the Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment. The event is being sponsored by the National Council for Science and Technology Communication.

Mr. Chandy said to encourage innovative projects and sustain the interest of students, the government would provide patent for top projects and industrial exposure to the students, if needed.

The main themes of the contest are energy exploration and conservation and the competition is held in two categories. While a few projects are based on surveys and field studies in their respective panchayat, others are on efficient domestic use of energy and bio-fuel. “We make use of alternative energy sources. In our project, we have aimed at producing bio-diesel from waste oil such as used cooking oil. A sample of our product was also tested and we drove a vehicle. This can save a lot of fuel,” said Athira Mohan, a participant.

J.S. Aswarya and her team, who did a study on the domestic use of energy by different income groups in Thiruvananthapuram city, said the people were oblivious to the existence and use of alternative energy sources in their households.

The State-level winners will receive cash awards and a chance to showcase their projects at the 25th session of the Kerala Science Congress.

Sixteen projects at the State-level will be identified for participation at the NCSC to be held at Varanasi from December 27 to 31. The congress will conclude on Tuesday.