Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, May 8:
A 20-member team of Young Astronomer Talent Search (YATS) 2014-15 today left the Odisha capital on a week-long tour to ISRO Space Applications Centre (SAC), Ahmedabad.
The team was flagged off by chief secretary GC Pati at the State Secretariat here.
Praising Tata Steel and Pathani Samanta Planetarium for organizing YATS, Pati congratulated the young students for getting selected in this prestigious competition and urged them to make best use of this tour learning more about space science in which India is making big strides.
Wishing the YATS students, vice president, Gopalpur Project (Tata Steel), Arun Misra advised them to develop interest and pursue science and bring laurels for themselves and the country.
Among others, Development Commissioner and Additional Chief Secretary UN Behera, Principal Secretary, Science and Technology, CJ Venugopal, director of Pathani Samanta Planetarium, W Billung and deputy director, Subhendu Patnaik and chief resident executive, Tata Steel, Bhubaneswar, Manikanta Naik, were present on the occasion.
The team, comprising of 15 boys and five girls from across the state including places like Kandhmal, Jharsuguda, Keonjhar, accompanied by their respective guide teachers from their schools, will be led by Subhendu Patnaik, deputy director of the Planetarium during this week-long tour to Ahemdabad from May 9 to 15, accompanied by Tata Steel official.
These top 20 students were selected from around 800 school children across the state participating in YATS competition in three stages at eight different zones— Belpahar, Keonjhar, Baleswar, Joda, Jeypore, Bhubaneswar, Brahmapur and Jeypore. The six-month exercise culminated on December 13 last year, the birth anniversary of the legendary astronomer Pathani Samanta.
The finalists were selected by a panel of experts on the basis of models displayed by them on “My Manned Mission to Space” at the Planetarium.
With a mission to popularize the excellent contributions of the legendary Pathani Samanta in the field of astronomy while identifying and encouraging young talents in the field of astronomy and space science among the school students of the state, Tata Steel, in collaboration with Pathani Samanta Planetarium, has been organizing YATS programme since 2007.
To provide world class exposure to budding scientific talents of Odisha, every year 20 winners of YATS, selected through multi-level tests from amongst students from class VIII- to X across the state, are sent on a visit to different centres of ISRO.
The young students will not only get first-hand experience of visiting the renowned ISRO Space Applications Centre, but also have opportunities to visit Science City at Ahemdabad and interact with the senior scientists at both the places.
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