The student: Britton Boras, 17
School: River Hill High
Special achievement: Semifinalist in the Intel Science Talent Search. He was one of 300 students chosen from throughout the nation to receive a $1,000 scholarship, with matching funds donated to their schools. His project was "Sonoluminescence Stability in Levitation Cells."
What is sonoluminescence: "It's a phenomenon ... where if you bombard de-gassed water except for one bubble with sound waves the bubble begins to collapse and expand and produce light. It's a hot topic right now because scientists are debating whether there is nuclear fusion in the middle of the bubble."
How did he become interested in the topic: After reading a research paper, he got in touch with an expert at the University of Washington who hired him as a summer intern.
Other achievements: He was ranked the No. 1 high school tennis player in Howard County this year. He is also vice president of his school's chapter of the Maryland Technology Honor Society. "It's an honor society that is based around the goal of promoting science in the student body and in the community. I help organize and judge science fairs at the surrounding middle schools. We run dinner meetings open to the public where we have guest speakers from different technological fields come in and talk about what they do."