Nova Scotia

N.S. all-girl robotic team honoured by premier

An all-girls robotic science team who are in the running for a global innovation award were honoured by the premier of Nova Scotia on Friday.

Sisters of Science team is also competing for a global innovation award

A Nova Scotian all-girl robotics team were honoured at province house during International Women's Day on Friday. (Office of the premier of Nova Scotia)

An all-girls robotic science team who are in the running for a global innovation award were honoured on Friday by Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil.

The seven girls, aged nine to 13, were the only Nova Scotian all-girls team in the recent Acadia University robotics competition, where teams programmed and built Lego robots and competed in missions to earn points.

Their team, Sisters of Science, is based in Kingston, N.S., and came in third.

They were photographed Friday with McNeil at Province House in Halifax during International Women's Day celebrations.

The night before the Acadia competition, Sisters of Science ran into problems. Their robot, Eva, wasn't working properly. Maya Costain, 13, sketched up a solution and spent all night building it. Eva is programmed to do several "missions," ranging from going over obstacles to launching a rocket. 

"It's kind of like a jig. It connects to the table to guide the robot to hit the rocket up," said Costain. "It's really exciting to see it work."

The team of seven girls placed third in a recent robotics competition. (Jean LaRoche/CBC)

Their coaches, Crista MacNeil and Sara Chisholm, said they wanted to provide a space for girls to excel in science.

The girls are not slotted into roles in their group. Every girl participates in programming and building.  

Team developing vest to reduce radiation exposure

Sisters of Science are also in the running for the First Lego League Global Innovation Award, a competition open to teams from around the world.

They are designing a vest that reduces radiation exposure. It contains a detector that forms bubbles when exposed to radiation, said 13-year-old Carmen Glavine.

"We like the idea of having a radiation bubble detector so you can track how much you are getting exposed to radiation," said Glavine. 

The team is working to get their vest patented. They hope the vest could one day allow women astronauts to stay in space longer. Currently women can't stay in space as long as men, who typically have more muscle mass.

The girls are hoping to hear their team's name called when the award is handed out this summer in San Jose, Calif.  

With files from Colleen Jones