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SATURDAY, JUNE 30, 2007
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Decatur student wins tech competition

By Bayne Hughes
hughes@decaturdaily.com 340-2432

Next to getting his diploma, Decatur High School's Grant Moore couldn't think of a better way to ends his high school days than to win a national championship.

Moore became the third Decatur High student in the last four years this week to win the Transportation Modeling competition at the Technology Student Association's 29th annual national conference in Nashville. He also finished third in the Computer-Aided Design/3-D Engineering competition.

"I thought I did well, but I was definitely surprised that I won. It definitely was exciting," Moore said.

Three other Decatur classmates finished in the top 10 as more than 5,000 students from the United States, Peru and Germany participated in the four-day conference that ended Thursday. James Sterrett was fourth in Dragster Design, Travis Letson was sixth in Science Visualization and Tori Hall was 10th in Flight Endurance. Amanda Allen finished in the top 16 in Flight Endurance.

Moore, who also made the finals last year, used the same car with which he won at the state competition to qualify. The theme of the competition was to build a muscle car of the future. Competitors had to use the popular muscle cars of the 1960s and 1970s as inspiration.

Using the Camaro, Challenger, Charger and Mustang as examples, Moore first made a hand drawing of his car. He then used wire to build a model of the vehicle. He used a computer to produce 3-D drawings to direct a micro router to cut the model car out of balsa.

"My car was smaller than everybody else, but it was faster because it was lighter and had less drag," Moore said.

In the 3-D CAD competition, the 30 competitors had to make a tool on site. Moore said he had to make a chisel holder, a tool unfamiliar to him before the competition.

The device holds a chisel to the proper angle on a grindstone.

"It's like a vice," Moore said.

Moore, Hall and Amanda Allen represented Decatur High at the TSA delegate assembly.

Moore is the son of Cindy Moore and Tony Moore. He plans to attend Auburn University this fall and major in engineering.

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