The Materials Olympics – Faculty of Engineering

The Materials Olympics

ASM Materials logo
ASM Materials logo

The Materials Olympics is a series of challenges where you will go up against other Ontario secondary school teams to determine who has the greatest mastery of materials science/engineering! Teams of students from secondary schools across Ontario are challenged to design and build solutions to problems with the goal of amplifying the performance of materials.

Every physical item or device that we use in our daily lives is made up of different materials and there was a materials engineer who made the choice as to which material to use. Every material has different properties, and the variation in these properties is what allows us to design devices that can perform different functions. Learning and harnessing this knowledge will provide students with insight into materials science & engineering, both the field and potential career opportunities.

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The inaugural edition of the Materials Olympics was held at McMaster University on February 22nd, 2024. Hosted for the first time jointly through the Department of Materials Science & Engineering as well as ASM Materials Camp Canada, 23 teams of high school students came from across Ontario to compete in four competitions: DomesDay, Resistance, Microscopy and Trivia competitions.  Additional details of the results can be found here.

Award Winners:

DomesDay Overall Winner: Goderich District Collegiate Institute

DomesDay Material Innovativeness Winner: Iroquois Ridge High School

Resistance Challenge: Elsie MacGill Secondary School

Microscopy Challenge: Elsie MacGill Secondary School

Materials Trivia Winners: Nora Frances Henderson Secondary School, Brantford Collegiate Institute and Vocational School, Assumption College, Iroquois Ridge High School

(Left) DomesDay Material Innovativeness winners from Iroquois Ridge High School with Dr. Zurob & Dr. Lee and (Right) winners of the DomesDay Competition from Goderich District Collegiate Institute with Dr. Hatem Zurob & Dr. Bryan Lee.


What does each team need?

  • A teacher willing to serve as a mentor.
  • Teams of 4 students.
  • Suitable meeting/workshop locations at your local high school.
  • A desire to have fun with STEM, learn, work together, make friends, be inclusive and solve problems!

How to Register

Registration is now closed

Itinerary of the Day


As in the Olympics, there will be multiple events for students to participate in! One of these, the DomesDay, will be prepared for in advance by each team. The remaining competitions will be done in-person.

  • DomesDay Competition
  • Materials Conductivity Competition
  • Microscopy Competition
  • Materials Jeopardy Competition

DomesDay Competition follows in the long line of traditional competitions by the ASM. Please refer to the detailed instructions on the competition and evaluation. The conductivity, microscopy and Jeopardy competitions will be conducted on the day, no prior knowledge is required other than curiosity and passion for materials!


Prizes are awarded to the school that the team is representing.


  • Winner – $1000
  • Material Innovativeness Award – $250
  • Students’ Choice Award – $250

Conductivity Competition

  • Winner – $250
  • Teams will be challenged to use the materials provided to build a component with a pre-defined conductivity. 

Microscopy Competition

  • Winner – $250
  • An image of Waldo (about as thin as 1/10 the width of a human hair) has been etched on various objects. Your team needs to use the optical microscope to find Waldo as quickly as possible.

Materials Jeopardy Competition:

  • Winner – $250
  • Test your knowledge of materials in a materials science themed Jeopardy game.
  • Compete against other schools to win.



  • Microscopy Demo: Harness the power of electrons and visualize materials at the atomic scale at McMaster University’s Canadian Centre for Electron Microscopy.
  • Materials & Music: Learn how materials shape modern music!


  • Material Properties Lecture: Experience a true university lecture on material properties given by one of the professors in the Materials department at McMaster!
  • Materials Magic Show: Come watch Dr. Hatem Zurob, chair of the Materials Science & Engineering Department at McMaster perform spectacular magic tricks that will leave you amazed!

McMaster Campus

Tours of McMaster and the McMaster Engineering facilities will be offered throughout the day!



McMaster Materials Engineering community members will be available to guide teams once they arrive on campus. However, teams are expected to arrange their own transportation to McMaster campus. Please refer to the detailed map of campus.


Food will not be provided by the event. However, teams are encouraged to utilize on-campus options for food.

Contact us

Have any questions? Please feel free to email us! Dr. Hatem Zurob & Dr. Bryan Lee

Logo designed by Haider Kahn from M.M. Robinson High School in Burlington