Two high school students in Pune’s Lohegaon have discovered six preliminary asteroids at the Kalam Centre Asteroid Search Campaign organized by Kalam Centre and the International Astronomical Search Collaboration (IASC).
In a statement issued on Saturday, the Vikhe Patil School said Arya Pulate and Shreya Waghmare discovered the asteroids, adding that all 22 participants in the campaign were selected after a rigorous screening process through a worldwide event organized between November 9 and December 3.
The students were selected from across the globe and trained to analyse data and spot potential asteroids close to Earth and 27 preliminary asteroid were discovered.
"Preliminary discoveries are the first observations of asteroids found in the Main Belt located between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter which need further confirmation to go to Provisional status. This usually takes up to 5 years after which the asteroid can be officially catalogued by Minor Planet Center, International Astronomical Union (IAU)," read the release.
"Knowing the asteroids around and mapping them is an important element in our bid to understand and monitor these flying rocks around our planet," the school release quoted Srijan Pal Singh, former adviser (Technology and Policy) to Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, and founder of Kalam Centre.