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Space Settlement Rocket Design Inspired By Orissa Temple Architecture Adjudged the Best by NASA

Sisters, Pooja Bhattacharya and Swastika Bhattacharya of Bhubaneswar, have won the grand prize for a rocket design-based on Orissan temple architecture and was adjudged the best at the space settlement design contest organized by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), US. The space vehicle is laid out in a triangular manner called Triratha as per ancient Kalingan Temple Style found in Orissa.

Minati Singha writes in Times of India

Pooja Bhattacharya and Swastika Bhattacharya of Bhubaneswar have won the grand prize from among 309 projects submitted by 875 students.

These projects were sponsored by 96 teachers from across the world. Students from US, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Dubai, UAE, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Romania, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Uruguay participated in the competition.

Puja Bhattacharya is a Plus Two second year student in BJB Junior College in Bhubaneswar and her younger sister, Swastika is a student of Class X at St Xaviers' High School, Kedargouri in Bhubaneswar. The girls were guided by their father Deepak Bhattacharya, a scientist.

The project, Orissa Design Inspired Systems and Aero Vehicles (ODISA), was developed in 2007 and was presented at a competition here, where experts rejected it.

Disheartened, the girls did not take up the project until the school principal insisted them to continue with it and submit it at higher forums and send it to the European Space Agency (ESA).

The ESA praised the project following which they decided to submit it at the NASA’s contest. "It's a great achievement and the credit goes to the school authorities," Deepak Bhattacharya said.

He claimed all aspects of the project is unique and new. The space vehicle can run on solid fuel, it has four engines and six giant boosters laid out in a triangular manner called Triratha as per Kalingan temple style.

The vehicle can also carry an additional two metric tonne weight to a geo-stationary orbit about 36,000 km above the earth's surface.