A team of eight undergraduate students from the Department of Aerospace Engineering of SRM University, Chennai won third position in Undergraduate Team Space Transportation Design Competition 2011-2012 organised by American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA).
AIAA is the world's largest technical society dedicated to the global aerospace profession. The organization conducts student design competitions and conferences all around the year to inspire and nurture young talent in the field of aeronautics and astronautics. The students of SRM University came to know of the competition from the organization website www.aiaa.org and they decided to participate in the same.
The team decided to go ahead with Undergraduate Team Space Transportation Design Competition. Started as a two-member team, the team then grew into eight and they geared up to participate in one of the respectable design competitions of AIAA.
The 2011-2012 Undergraduate Team Space Transportation Design Competition required participants to design, and frame a business plan for commercial Earth-to-Orbit passenger vehicle. The vehicle should be capable of taking paying customers from earth to orbit and back for a variety of research and tourism purposes.
The SRM University Space Transportation Design Team calls their space vehicle NAVSHITIZ VAHAK-the carrier of a new horizon. The design team consists of eight students - Sweety Prakash Pate, Anku Aravind, Jeevraj Hejmady, Joel Alex Roy, Rishabh Bana, Rajdeep Chowdhuri, Ravi Shakya, Sarnavi Mahesh all from final year and pre-final year of their Bachelor of Technology course. The team had found excellent mentor in Dr. M. Balakrishnan, the faculty advisor and he is also the Head of the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Assistant Professor, V. Krishnamurthy as the project advisor of aerospace department. The design work involved the following:
In addition, as the competition required a business plan (Sarnavi Mahesh), was framed to commercialize the transportation vehicle for research and tourism purposes in space. The AIAA announced the results on August 24, 2012; Virginia polytechnic institute and state university, Virginia won the first prize; followed by California State Polytechnic University, California bagged the second position, and SRM University at the third position won 1000USD prize money from the AIAA organization.
The SRM University team is the only Indian team to win this competition this season, securing a spot in the top three best designs all over the world. The design team from SRM University; is charged up with this success and plan to continue their work in future, win more competitions and bring in awards, and inspire their fellow students.