Astronomica 2014

 Astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another.

                                                                                                                                                        - Plato

AstroNITR brought the first inter school event of Rourkela in NIT for this academic year as they inaugurated “Astronomica 2014” on Sunday morning, 24th August, with a curious crowd of school children that ranged from the seventh to the twelfth standard.

The introductory presentation on the working of a telescope, explanation of a spectrum, blackhole and supernova was apt enough to increase the thirst of astronomy among these young minds. The event fetched a total strength of around 192 students from all over Rourkela from various schools like Deepika English Medium School, Sri Aurobindo, DPS, Carmel, St. Paul’s, DAV and many others.

An inspiring lecture by Prof. Biplab Ganguly, the faculty advisor of AstroNITR uplifted the enthusiasm not only among the visitors but also among the members to give their best for the event and thereafter.
The first and foremost event of the day began with the quiz prelims (written round), with questions related to astronomy, the results of which decided the advancement of the participants to one of the two major events, the quiz finals or the treasure hunt. Apart from these, there were quite a few other events too that gave an opportunity to the students to showcase their area of interest for astronomy.

Painting and collage making was very popular among the participants where they got a chance to present their creative ideas regarding outer space and alien life. Some of the paintings were really worthy of appreciation. D-safe tested the problem solving capabilities of the students. It was a situation analysis event where the students were given problem statements for which they had to come with a solution. Spin a wheel was also entertaining for the participants well.
The exhibition was a major attempt to make the event a successful one. Conducted by a group of newly inducted first years, inductees gave their level best to portray their field of interest through their exhibits by presenting the lifecycle of stars, zodiac signs, auroras and, Hubble and J.W.S.T. Telescope. Following that, was the telescope handling workshop, which taught the students how to manifest their desire of seeing a star or a planet in the night sky. The day-long event concluded with the prize distribution ceremony in the evening. The first two placed participants of each were awarded.

It was dark outside when all the proceedings came to an end and a night sky watch was on the cards. Clouds in the night sky proved to be the spoilsport as the expectant eyes of the participants scanned the heavens for a glimpse at even a single random star. The clouds dismayed many of the members at this point of time and club members have decided to conduct another such great event during the mid-October this year hoping to have a clear sky then.
Team MM wishes ASTRO NITR success in their upcoming endeavours.