Thanks to Awty's STEAM program, four Awty students including Nabeel Diab, Zachary Francis, Paul Sload, and Petros Zombanakis, competed in the Space Settlement Design Competition at Johnson Space Center on March 23-25, 2018. Congratulations to Paul Sload! Of Awty's four attendees, he ended up on the winning team.
The competition put students into four teams of 40-50 students (mainly from Texas and Iowa) each. Each team had the task of creating a proposal for a space settlement design (according to the requirements provided) in less than 24 hours. Students experienced the magnitude of an engineering project with a very limited time constraint. Each team had a hierarchy where students became leaders of individual divisions such as human engineering, structural design, operations, automation, and finance.
The teams began on Saturday around 11:00 a.m., after briefings. The presentation was due at 7:30 a.m. on Sunday when each team presented their proposal to a panel of judges that included NASA engineers, scientists, and corporate executives. After a 35-minute presentation, the judges spent 15 minutes asking questions. After some deliberation, one team was awarded the best presentation by the judges.
The winning team nominates 15 students that will be invited to attend the international competition with students from all over the world. Invitations to participate in the international competition during the summer in Florida are yet to be determined.