BASF Selects North Carolina State University Research Team As Science Competition Winner

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC (July 30, 2018) – BASF selected a graduate-student team from North Carolina State University (NC State) as the winner of its fourth annual North American science competition. The NC State team was selected from 13 teams that submitted projects to the competition. The winning team members, Dr. Nasie Constantino, Marzana Mantasha Mahmud and Chunkyun Seok, each received a $1,000 cash award. The task of this year’s competition was to develop solutions to identify plant responses to stress.

“We are continually trying to find ways to equip our customers with the tools they need to get ahead of plant health issues,” said Luke Bozeman, BASF Director, Research and Development, U.S. Crop Protection. “This competition provided a unique opportunity for young academic researchers to work in teams to help identify solutions to a real global plant health concern.”

The NC State team showcased innovative technology to help farmers better manage plant stress factors, such as heat, drought, insects and pathogens. The team created a real-time sensor that could identify and detect volatile organic compounds that plants produce when stressed. With multiple factors affecting a plant’s ability to grow to maturity, the team’s sensor technology could allow for a timely and targeted response which ultimately helps improve a farmer’s ability to produce healthier and more robust crops.

“With the cash prize and mentorship from BASF scientists, we can further our research now,” said student researcher Marzana Mantasha Mahmud. “As electrical engineers, we are so excited that we can contribute to this project. It’s a whole different field of study for us.”


With a rapidly growing population, the world is increasingly dependent on our ability to develop and maintain sustainable agriculture and healthy environments. BASF’s Crop Protection division works with farmers, agricultural professionals, pest management experts and others to help make this possible. With their cooperation, BASF is able to sustain an active R&D pipeline, an innovative portfolio of products and services, and teams of experts in the lab and in the field to support customers in making their businesses succeed. In 2016, BASF’s Crop Protection division generated sales of €5.6 billion. For more information, please visit us at www.agriculture.basf.com or on any of our social media channels.

BASF Corporation, headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey, is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has more than 18,200 employees in North America, and had sales of $17.9 billion in 2017. For more information about BASF’s North American operations, visit www.basf.com. At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. The more than 115,000 employees in the BASF Group work on contributing to the success of our customers in nearly all sectors and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio is organized into five segments: Chemicals, Performance Products, Functional Materials & Solutions, Agricultural Solutions and Oil & Gas. BASF generated sales of €64.5 billion in 2017. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (BAS). Further information at www.basf.com.