Are You Smarter Than THIS Sixth-Grader? She’s Pretty Smart!

Adeline Hillier behind the KIXI microphone

Meet Adeline Hillier, a local sixth-grader and science enthusiast.  Adeline and her dad visited the KIXI studios recently and spent some time with Rob Purdy from the KIXI engineering department talking real technical stuff. Adeline has a fascinating project she’ll be entering in the state Science Fair in Bremerton on March 30th. In her words:

My name is Adeline Hillier.  I’m a 6th grader at Tillicum Middle School.  I am presenting a project at the state science fair on March 30, 2012 called “Can You Collect Useful Energy from Radio Waves and is it Practical?” It’s full of tons of new stuff to learn.  I got some really surprising results.  I received the KIXI station really well because it is a 50 kW station and it’s close to where I live.  It also has good music!

With different crystal radios, I measured voltage on a voltmeter.  Some of the highlight things that I learned are that it helps a ton to use a high vertical antenna, and to use radials for ground. At my house with a 50-foot horizontal antenna I got up to about 2 volts.  With a vertical antenna hanging from a balloon 50 feet in the air, I got up to 11 volts!  I went to Luther Burbank Park in Mercer Island right by Lake Washington.  It’s closer to KIXI than my house and it’s right by Lake Washington, which transmits the medium frequency ground waves well.  There, with a 60-foot vertical antenna and radials for ground, I collected up to 102 volts!  But it can’t put out much current.  I was able to barely light an LED light and charge a AAA battery very slowly.  Although, it’s not very powerful.  So I calculated that it would take about 2 months to charge the battery.

Dave Hillier, Adeline Hillier, and KIXI’s Dan Murphy in the Main studio

My dad e-mailed the people at KIXI to tell them about my project.  Then they invited us for a tour.  I thank the people at KIXI for their time to show me the station.  The tour lasted two hours, wow! It was a once in a lifetime experience that I will always remember, wow!  Thanks so much KIXI!  Thanks Dan Murphy, Rob Purdy and everybody else who showed me so many things!

- Adeline Hillier

Adeline’s dad Dave Hillier is understandably very proud of his daughter, saying “We need to support our young people, especially in math and science, if we want to have a healthy society.”

We couldn’t agree more. We’ll let you know how the Science Fair turns out.  Good luck Adeline!