Bhubaneswar: The winners of Young Astronomer Talent Search (YATS) 2017-18 returned from a week-long exposure trip to the Space Application Centre (SAC) of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) in Ahmedabad, thereby, signaling its conclusion today. YATS is a unique initiative of Tata Steel for high school students of the state, organised in association with Pathani Samanta Planetarium, under Science and Technology Department, Government of Odisha.
A total of 20 school students from across Odisha who were the winners of the 11th edition, were sent to ISRO as an appreciation of their effort. The students were given an opportunity to learn about various aspects of operations of ISRO and evolution of the Indian space programme. The team comprising of equal number of girls and boys, each accompanied by her/his guide teacher, visited various laboratories of SAC Ahmedabad and interacted with the scientists-in-charge who explained the finer details of the research work they were engaged in. During his interaction with the students, Mr Tapan Misra, Director, SAC, ISRO, Ahmedabad praised the efforts of Tata Steel and the planetarium for undertaking such an initiative and facilitating a unique experience for the students in the form of a visit to ISRO facilities.
Prior to the visit to the ISRO facility, the students went for a visit of Gujarat Science City in Ahmedabad. The exposure visit was earlier flagged off by Chief Minister of Odisha Shri Naveen Patnaik on June 07, 2018.
While popularizing the great contributions of the legendary astronomer of the state, Pathani Samanta, YATS started in 2007 with the aim to create awareness in the field of astronomy and space science among students and motivate and encourage the young minds to become Scientists and Astronomers. To provide world-class exposure to young talents of Odisha, each year a total of 20 winners from classes IX-X across Odisha are selected based on an essay-writing and quiz competitions and are thereafter sent on an exposure trip to an ISRO centre. More than seventy-five thousand young science enthusiasts of the state have participated in YATS in the last 11 years and 140 winning students had the opportunity to visit various facilities of ISRO in India.