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The Beauty of Crystal Surfaces Competition has come to a successful end

The Beauty of Crystal Surfaces Competition has come to a successful end

Zagreb, 2 June 2017An amazing experience we will always look back on with a smile on our face. Invaluable time spent with school friends, experiencing ups and downs, but continuing to move forward. A range of emotions – from thrill to disappointment, from accepting failure to strong motivation and desire to try again. The effort which has truly paid off, as we have had a great time and have learned a lot. These are just some of the thoughts expressed by students and teachers from all over Croatia about their participation in a unique crystal growing competition the Beauty of Crystal Surfaces. The main objective of the competition, organised by the Croatian Association of Crystallographers, the Croatian Crystallographers Community and PLIVA Croatia, was to create among young generations a positive attitude toward science, research and learning through direct experience, thus contributing to higher-quality education. Today at PLIVA’s Research Institute the most successful participants of this second crystal growing competition have been named the best young crystallographers in Croatia, and have been given diplomas and valuable awards for their hard work and effort.

By organising the second edition of the Beauty of Crystal Surfaces we wanted to contribute to better education, to bring crystallography closer to students, and to motivate them to think about the advantages of selecting natural sciences as their future profession. I would like to congratulate the winners, but also everyone who participated in the competition, and I would also like to invite all schools in Croatia to apply for the next edition of the competition and to enjoy interesting experiments and the magic of team work, to broaden experience and have a lot of fun”, said Dr Aleksandar Višnjevac, the president of the Croatian Association of Crystallographers and one of the jury members.

We are usually unaware of the fact that crystals are everywhere around us – in our mobile phones, our television sets, computers… It is hard to find a branch in industry where crystals do not play an important role. This is why these competitions, in which we spark interest in chemistry and especially crystals among young talents, are particularly important for the future of scientific and technological advancement and development in Croatia. In addition, it is wonderful to have an opportunity to develop competitive and team spirit, and to encourage young people to enter the world of science, leaving a mark in the society“, said professor Ernest Meštrović, Senior TAPI R&D and project leader in PLIVA.

As a pharmaceutical leader in the region, PLIVA has been actively participating in a number of projects involving students, motivating them to develop research spirit and steering them toward science in an interesting, fun and inspirational way. The love of research is developed at an early age, so it is important to encourage curiosity among young scientists and invest in their education. We are already looking forward to the next edition of the competition, further popularisation of science, and PLIVA’s further investments in young talents who, we firmly believe, will grow to become a valuable generation of young scientists and experts in their fields of work“, said Mihael Furjan, president of the Board of PLIVA Croatia.

The Beauty of Crystal Surfaces Competition is intended for the students of elementary school years 7 and 8, and for general and vocational high school students. It is divided into three categories, and the objective is to grow the biggest and the most regular crystal. This year more than 500 students from all over Croatia took part in the competition, conducting experiments and measurements, taking notes, and processing data on the bases of their observation and knowledge. Crystals and lab logs were then delivered to the jury of experts who evaluated several elements – mono-crystallity, the regularity of edges, the structure and development of surfaces, clarity, mass and lab log.

The most successful elementary school teams in organic salt growing category were the teams from OŠ Antun Nemčić Gostovinski and OŠ Đuro Ester from Koprivnica, and OŠ Varaždin. The most successful high school teams in this category were teams from Nature & Technology High School from Split and Josip Slavenski High School from Čakovec. In the inorganic salt growing category the teams from elementary schools OŠ Vladimir Nazor from Pazin, First Elementary School from Dugave, Zagreb, and OŠ Turanj from Karlovca had the best results, and so did students from Vladimir Nazor High School from Zadar, Vladimir Prelog Nature & Science School from Zagreb, Sisak High School and Josip Slavenski High School from Čakovec, who shared the third place. The winners in the challenging category of inorganic compound synthesis and crystallisation were teams from elementary schools OŠ Dolac from Rijeka, OŠ Antun Nemčić Gostovinski from Koprivnica and OŠ Josip Pupačić from Omiš. The best high school teams came from Josip Slavenski School from Čakovec, Bjelovar High School and Vladimir Prelog Nature and Science School from Zagreb.

The students were divided into teams with maximum three members, led by a mentor who guided them through an exciting and amazing world of crystals and their growth. The participants who achieved best results will have an opportunity to visit PLIVA’s Research Centre in Zagreb and learn more not only about the world of crystals, but also about other interesting branches of chemistry and chemical technology.

The ranking of all elementary schools is available here, and of all high schools here. You can find more information about the competition on its official Facebook page.


For further information contact:

Tamara Sušanj Šulentić
Communications Director
Tel: +385 1 3724 852
Fax: +385 1 3724 358
E-mail: tamara.sulentic@pliva.hr

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