At age 14 he became the youngest person on earth to create a nuclear fusion reactor. His purpose was to build a fusion reactor small enough, cheap enough and safe enough to produce cancer-fighting medical isotopes as needed, in every hospital in the world.
He has competed in numerous international science fairs, winning more than $100,000.
A rational society would know what to do with a kid like Taylor Wilson, especially now that America’s technical leadership is slipping and scientific talent increasingly has to be imported. But by the time Taylor was 12, both he and his brother, Joey, who is three years younger and gifted in mathematics, had moved far beyond their school’s (and parents’) ability to meaningfully teach them. Both boys were spending most of their school days on autopilot, their minds wandering away from course work they’d long outgrown.
Fortunately, his parents discovered the Davidson Academy, “a subsidized public school for the nation’s smartest and most motivated students, those who score in the top 99.9th percentile on standardized tests.”
At age 13, Taylor sat in upper-division (university) nuclear physics classes. He learned bits of “nuclear and plasma physics, chemistry, radiation metrology and electrical engineering” to design his reactor. Shortly after his 14th birthday, he became the 32nd person in the world to create a nuclear fusion reaction.
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