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Way to Go: Justin Wallace of Huntington Station

Justin Wallace, center, took first place in Brookhaven

Justin Wallace, center, took first place in Brookhaven National Laboratory's 2018 Model Bridge Building Contest. Second and third place went to Hasnain Sayed of Bay Shore High School and Harrison Goldstein of Smithtown High School East, respectively. Credit: Brookhaven National Laboratory

A South Huntington student has taken the top spot in Brookhaven National Laboratory’s 2018 Model Bridge Building Contest.

Justin Wallace, a senior at Walt Whitman High School, placed first this spring in the annual competition, which challenges students to design and construct model bridges that are intended to be simplified versions of real-world bridges. This year, 87 bridges were built by students from 16 high schools throughout Long Island.

Wallace’s bridge weighed 14.62 grams and recorded an efficiency of 2117. Efficiency is calculated from the bridge’s weight and the weight the bridge can hold before bending or breaking more than one inch.

Wallace, 18, went on to place 31st nationwide last month at the 2018 International Bridge Building Contest in Chicago.

“I did some online research on bridge design to gain a better understanding of the concepts and specifications,” said Wallace, who placed second in last year’s local competition. “As you can imagine, I’m very happy my research paid off.”

Second and third place went to Hasnain Sayed of Bay Shore High School and Harrison Goldstein of Smithtown High School East, respectively. Sayed’s bridge weighed 23.38 grams with an efficiency of 1316, while Goldstein’s bridge weighed 14.65 grams with an efficiency of 935.

— MICHAEL R. EBERT

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