Lucy Lake's (2018) Biomimicry inspired carbon fiber racing oar has seen her placed second in the Engineering category of the 2019 BHP Foundation Science and Engineering Awards.

Lucy designed the racing oar to improve rowing efficiency and power. The design aims to reduce drag and enhance performance. “This is the third phase of oar design, following on from timber oars, laminated oars and now introducing biomimicry inspired design,” Lucy explained.

Lucy was one of only four students who qualified to attend the International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) Finals to be held in Arizona. Over 1800 high school students from 75 countries, regions and territories are given the opportunity to showcase their independent research.

Fellow Barker student, James Casey-Brown (2018), was placed 3rd in the Engineering category for his minimally obtrusive 'Surf-Safe' swimming device designed to be activated when a swimmer in the surf is at risk of drowning.

James said he had designed and produced a piece of equipment to prevent drowning in the surf through an inflation device situated around the waist. "The device has been deliberately designed so that users do not feel stigmatised as unable to swim, encouraging them to use the ‘Surf Safe’ device," he said.

The BHP Foundation Science and Engineering Awards are a partnership between the BHP Foundation, CSIRO, the Australian Science Teachers Association and each state and territory Science Teachers Association.

Since 1981, the awards have been recognising student excellence. 

In 2018 Oliver Nicholls (2017) was awarded 1st place in the Engineering category at the BHP Billiton Foundation Science and Engineering Awards for his autonomous robotic window cleaner, going on to achieve further worldwide recognition at the ISEF with another win in his category.