Teen Bengaluru girl goes global in science & astrophysics
Bengaluru 6 September 2023- Anika Jha is a 13-year-old girl from Bengaluru who is passionate about learning and solving problems around her with technology and science. She is a Ted Ed speaker inspiring others to embrace their unique form of intelligence and a Youth Worker at an NGO (Distressed Children and Infants International, DCI) where she helps children and orphans in poverty or with disabilities get proper quality education.
Anika participated in the online Mars Design Engineering Competition, organized by the Mars Society (nonprofit organization that advocates for human Mars exploration and colonization, founded by Dr. Robert Zubrin in 1998, former members include Elon Musk and Buzz Aldrin).
She has dedicated an entire month to create a feasible and detailed plan for the first manned mission to Mars with her international teammates. With them, she has written a 25-page scientific report detailing the Science, Engineering, and Human Operations aspects. She met and interacted with NASA scientists, former mission controllers, astrobiologists, etc. to get feedback on her report and learn more about Mars. Her report won in 2 categories: Science and Overall, Winner.
As the Overall Winner, Anika and her team are especially invited to the annual international Mars Society Convention, taking place at Arizona State University (Arizona, USA) from October 5 to 8 this year. Additionally, her report will be published by the Mars Society as a book and ebook in the next few months.
Aside from her manned Mars mission project, Anika has developed a Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence based web application called Quake It Off to address the problems caused by earthquakes. Her solution is chosen in the Technovation Girls (global tech education nonprofit based in USA that empowers girls to become leaders, creators, problem-solvers, and tech entrepreneurs) from 22000 other applications as a finalist. For this, she is personally invited for 5 days to present her solution in front of world leaders and industry experts at San Francisco’s Silicon Valley in a World Summit.
Anika won first place in the TISBHacks hackathon organized by TISB (The International School Bangalore), and was in the top 3 winners of the OakCodeFest 24-hour hackathon organized by Oakridge International School twice in a row. She is passionate about space science and has been recognized as a standout entry by NASA’s Astrophoto Challenge twice for her image processing. She has received expert feedback from NASA scientists for this.