Student is semifinalist in NASA competition

| April 27, 2023 | 0 Comments

NIKHIL GADDAM with his telescope.

Hancock Park Elementary 9-year-old Nikhil Gaddam was recently selected as a semifinalist in the “Power to Explore” NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) competition.

NASA challenged students across the country to learn about Radioisotope Power Systems, a nuclear energy technology. Entrants were asked to imagine “how their ‘personal super powers’ would energize their success on their own radioisotope-powered science mission,” according to the NASA website. The contest received nearly 1,600 entries. Gaddam was one of only 15 semifinalists in his grade category.

The third-grade science enthusiast came up with a mission that would send a rover to Venus. He postulated that probing our neighboring planet’s carbon dioxide-rich atmosphere and studying how Venus has changed over time could tell us a lot about global warming.

To see this local student’s NASA-recognized entry, visit

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Category: People

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