A Team of 12 Indian School Students Win NASA’s International Space Settlement Design Competition
A team comprised of 12 students of Amity international school,Noida – Dhruv Khanna, Aabhas Vaish, Aman Agarwal, Anuj Harisinghani, Rishab Srivastava, Chittaranjan Prasad, Suchit Jain, Rahul Rajput, Tanay Asija, Anant Chaturvedi, Grishma Purewal from Class XI and Mudit Gupta from Class X – won the prestigious 20th Annual International Space Settlement Design Competition, 2015, held at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA.
The students were part of a company “Vulture Aviation”, which had students participating from Latin America, North America, UK and the USA.
NASA has been planning to build human colonies in Mars for quite some time, and this competition mainly involved building model city for human habitation in Mars. The final round of the competition, which was held between 2nd August and 4th August witnessed participation of four companies with 50 participants each from across the world who were competing for the title.
The winning team worked for 48 hours and designed two main settlements in space, with four outlying settlements capable of accommodating a population of 24,000 in addition to a transient population of 3,000 on Mars using a transparent mineral called ‘Aluminum Oxynitride’. While designing the settlement, the team members worked on aspects such as Automation Engineering, Operations Engineering, Human Engineering, Marketing and Finance, Schedule and Cost.
Aabhas Vaish, one of the students said that, the selection of location for the Mars colony depends on the quality of soil and amount of dust storm in the particular area.
Another student Grishma Purewal, who worked on the business development and the costing of the entire project shared that their Mars Space Settlement was named as ‘Argonom Bult’ and proposed to be designed inside a crater. She also said that the proposed total cost for settlement of colony for 24,000 habitants came out to be 1,226 billion dollars and it will take 12-14years.
According to Mudhit Gupta, the youngest member of the team, “It was a thrilling experience. From material to be used in designing the colony to waste and water management, external transportation, power generation, water recycling, we even proposed provisions for cargo handling, distribution of electricity and storage of excess of electricity and mode of transportation with the earth,”
Praising their achievement, Dr. Amita Chauhan, chairperson, Amity International Schools, said, “We are proud to have such brilliant students who have made the country proud with their talent and hard work. We are inspired by scientist and visionary Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam’s work in science and technology. We had been participating in the competition for eight years now, but this year we finally made it to the top.”