Charlotte Hannah
November 21, 2012

Teen Girls Whose Inventions Are Making the World a Better Place (VIDEOS)

What were you doing when you were in high school? I’ll tell you what I was up to: skipping class, wearing stupid clothes, feeling sorry for myself and generally being a nuisance. During my high school years, I invented one thing: a nearly foolproof (or so it seemed, at the time – I’m sure everyone was on to me) method for faking notes from my parents.

Unlike me, there are some amazing teenagers out there who actually spent their time inventing things that are good for more than just getting out of detention.

Here are some teenaged girls whose inventions are making the world a better place:

Deepika Kurup

Photo credit: 3M Young Scientist Challenge

14-year-old Deepika Kurup won the 3M Young Scientist Challenge (and its $25,000 prize) for inventing a solar powered water purifier. Deepika’s water purifying jug uses two chemicals that react when exposed to sunlight to decontaminate water, and it’s simple, affordable and portable.

Oh, and that $25,000 she won? Deepika’s using it to deploy her prototype purifier in India.

Duro-Aina Adebola, Akindele Abiola, Faleke Oluwatoyin and Bello Eniola

Via: The Daily Mail

Duro-Aina Adebola, 14, Akindele Abiola, 14, Faleke Oluwatoyin, 14, and Bello Eniola, 15, invented a generator that’s powered by pee. That’s right: their generator can turn one liter of urine into six hours of electricity. Their invention debuted at Maker Faire Africa, and it could be revolutionary for the people of Nigeria.

Angela Zhang

Photo credit: AP / Siemens Foundation

17-year-old Angela Zhang invented a possible cure for cancer in her spare time. Her cure, which I’m not even going to attempt to explain, almost completely eliminated tumors in mice. While you obviously won’t see it on the shelves any time soon, it could someday save your life. In the meantime, Angela won herself $100,000 in the national Siemens science contest for her paper on the cure. Pretty sweet!

The Hippie Pandas

Photo credit: The Hippie Pandas

These girls aren’t even high schoolers – they’re in freakin’ middle school! They call themselves The Hippie Pandas, and they range in age from 11 to 14. This group of awesome girls created a new system that can be used to pasteurize milk in countries where traditional methods aren’t available. Their invention won them the 1st place Gracious Professionalism Award at the 2012 FIRST Championship and it’s already being used to save lives in Nicaragua.

Aisha Mustafa


Aisha Mustafa is 19 years old, and an out-of-this-world invention of hers may be revolutionizing space travel in the near future. According to, Aisha’s invention utilizes silicon panels on spaceships to “make space exploration lighter, safer and cheaper than the traditional “blast off” method.”

Catherine Wong

Photo credit: Catherine Wong

Catherine Wong is a 17-year-old from New Jersey who invented a portable electrocardiogram that sends data over cellular networks to a doctor for analysis. Catherine’s invention makes getting an electrocardiogram, which is a test that measures the heart’s rhythm and can be crucial in the early detection of heart problems, more accessible to those who may not otherwise be able to access or afford it. This could mean the difference between life and death for people in countries like India, where more people have access to cell phones than they do to toilets.