Bhubaneswar: The top 20 budding astronomers from across Odisha are all set for a visit to the Space Application Centre( SAC) of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Ahmedabad. Chief Minister of Odisha, Shri Naveen Patnaik, flagged off the visit today during a function held at the state Secretariat, Bhubaneswar. Shri Badri Narayan Patra, Minister for School & Mass Education and Science & Technology, Government of Odisha, Shri R. Balakrishnan, Development Commissioner-cum-Additional Chief Secretary, Government of Odisha, Shri Rajiv Kumar, Vice President, Operations, Tata Steel Kalinganagar, Shri Sarvesh Kumar, Chief Brand Management & Strategic Communications, Corporate Communications India & SEA, Tata Steel, Mr Manikanta Naik, Chief Resident Executive, Tata Steel, Bhubaneswar were present on the occasion.
These promising youngsters were selected through essay writing and quiz contest conducted through the Young Astronomer Talent Search (YATS) 2016-17 platform, organised by Tata Steel in collaboration with the Pathani Samanta Planetarium.
Shri Patnaik congratulated the winners for their interest in the unique programme and extended his best wishes for their visit. Lauding the efforts of Tata Steel and Pathani Samnta Planetarium he said, “YATS provides an opportunity to the students in rural and remote areas of the State to exhibit their talent and come to the forefront in the field of astronomy. While creating awareness about Pathani Samanta’s contribution to the field of astronomy and space science, YATS also motivates the young minds of Odisha to that field.”
Expressing his happiness to see the student across the state who have been selected Shri Patra urged them to make best use of their trip to ISRO.
On the occasion Shri Rajiv Kumar said, “In this year’s YATS, Tata Steel has managed to reach out to 34,000 students across 300 schools in 27 districts. We shall continue to strive to make YATS bigger and better with each passing year”.
The team heading for the visit, comprises 10 boys and 10 girls from across Odisha, accompanied by their respective guide teachers and an official from Tata Steel. Besides visiting the facility at ISRO’s Space Application Centre, the students will also get one of those rare opportunities of interacting with some of the top-notch space scientists of the country. The Space Application Centre of ISRO at Ahmedabad is engaged in developing satellite technology and implementation of satellite systems for scientific, technological and application missions.
Tata Steel has been organising YATS since 2007, with an aim to popularise the noteworthy contributions of legendary astronomer of Odisha, Pathani Samanta and to carry on his legacy. The company identifies and encourages young talent from high schools across the State in the field of astronomy and space science. In order to provide world-class exposure to young talents of Odisha, each year a total of 20 winners from classes VIII-X across Odisha are selected based on an essay-writing and quiz competitions and are thereafter sent on an exposure trip to different centres of ISRO.
YATS was a four-month long exercise designed to find 20 best young talents in the state. The 10th Edition witnessed participation of nearly 34,000 students from over 300 schools, spread over 27 districts of Odisha in essay and quiz competitions. This four-month long exercise culminated on December 13, 2016, the birth anniversary of Pathani Samanta. An added attraction was the ten-day ISRO Exhibition organized by the company as part of this annual event.
Tata Steel stands committed to partnering the development in Odisha. One of the key aspects the company has identified is to leverage and provide best in class opportunities in education, which motivate students to think out of the box and venture into diverse career options.