DENTON (UNT), Texas -- Justin Zhong, a second-year student in the Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science at the University of North Texas, has been named a semifinalist in the 2014 Intel Science Talent Search.
Zhong, from Plano, was chosen for his research project "Self-Cleaning Mechanism of Gecko Setae: Observation, Modeling and Implication in Biomimetic Design." Zhong works with UNT College of Engineering Associate Professor Zhenhai Xia to investigate the quick-release adhesion attribute of gecko feet, which allows the reptiles to adhere to surfaces but detach quickly. The researchers hope to develop an adhesive with similar features for consumer use.
The Intel Science Talent Search is the nation's most prestigious pre-college science competition. Each year 300 students are named semifinalists, and each semifinalist receives a $1,000 award from the Intel Foundation with an additional $1,000 going to each student's school. Semifinalists go on to compete for $1.25 million in awards.
TAMS is a two-year residential program at UNT that allows exceptionally talented students to complete their freshman and sophomore years of college while receiving the equivalent of high school diplomas. Students enroll in the academy following their sophomore year of high school, live in a UNT residence hall and attend UNT classes with college students. After two years, they enroll at UNT or another university to finish their bachelor's degrees.