- Space Technology Students� Society, or spAts, in short, is the official student body under Kalpana Chawla Space Technology Cell. Founded in 2008 by a small group of young and ambitious undergraduate students, spAts had humble beginnings. A small club which was founded as a congregation of students who had a common interest called space, spAts started off as an ordinary student-run society.
Since its inception, the society has seen multiple changes. From what used to be a normal space discussion forum, spAts evolved itself into a professionally run society which hosts a plethora of events along with the first and largest space technology fest in India, the National Students� Space Challenge.
The National Students� Space Challenge (NSSC) is the centrepiece of spAts. As the name suggests, NSSC is a national-level fest purely dedicated towards space and space technology. The fest had its start in the year 2011 when the society decided to independently host a fest to provide for a platform to those aspiring engineers and scientists of India who needed an opportunity to showcase their talent. In its inaugural year, NSSC had just one event: Liftoff. This event which is a competition to build the best water rocket with the given specifications still remains the highlight of the fest after 8 long years. Through the years, various other events such as autonomous and manual bot making, space quizzes, case studies and astrophotography among others have been added. Besides the events, the National Students� Space Challenge is also famous for its supremely successful guest lectures, exhibitions and workshops.
The fest sees a huge student participation every year. It has seen a literal exponential rise in its participation from the tens to the hundreds to the thousands within a span of 8 small years.
The whole fest is organised and managed completely by the students and also with the support of Kalpana Chawla Space Technology Cell. The students ranging from young first-year undergraduate students to the more experienced final-years manage to pull this off in a rather spectacular fashion. The �Junior Coordinators�, or the freshers learn a great deal when they indulge in the process of fest management and from their seniors who teach them various facets of organising such an event. They get to learn crucial skills which help them prepare for the world outside the college such as man-management, finance, marketing and obviously, astrophysics and space technology.
Apart from organising the NSSC, spAts indulges itself in various other activities. Every semester it organises at least one open session for sky gazing when everyone in the campus is invited to participate and learn about astronomy in general. It also releases a semesterly periodical called the Moonwalk which discusses all the latest happenings in the field of astronomy and space technology. Thousands of its copies are distributed between the faulty and the student community for free for the sake of spreading awareness. Also, society has a reputation for taking up projects and competing in competitions across the nation. And most importantly, they hold frequent discussions among themselves to dwell deeper into the world of cosmology and astronomy.