Abhishiekh and his team first submitted the concept for a doughnut-shaped space city, in orbit around the earth. Designed to accommodate around 15,000 people at a time, and spread over a 1.2 km radius, the team had provided for gravity, atmosphere and civic amenities in the space city. Now they will design a similar city on the moon, meant to house at least 16,500 people. Predictably, team members are excited about their upcoming trip. While 10 members are first year engineering students, seven are from the Budha Dal Public School in Patiala, which is collaborating with Abhishiekh on the project.
Abhishiekh, the engine and driver behind the project, told Outlook that he’s proud that theirs is the only "foreign team" selected by NASA, the other seven being from the US. Anyway, getting noticed by nasa probably wasn’t as difficult for these budding scientists as managing funds for the overseas trip. For some time, it appeared the team may not be able to go for want of sufficient funds. Then Punjab CM Amarinder Singh and the department of science and technology both offered to help, although financial assistance is yet to come. Meanwhile, parents and friends have put together the money. The team was also invited to meet the US ambassador to India David Mulford last month, to spend some time explaining the project to him.