Space Apps Challenge: The world's largest space apps hackathon.

September 22, 2021 | by: David Kodjani

The Space Apps Challenge is, as the name suggests, a space applications challenge. This event of skill and talent for solving space problems, is a 48 hour international hackathon that takes place in various locations around the world.

People, students, and young professionals from different fields come to present innovative ideas and projects to solve space problems across different IT fields, such as:

  • data visualization,
  • software development,
  • design,
  • coding optimization, etc.

Established by NASA, the Space Apps Challenge is this year in the tenth challenge. In honor of this event, the theme for Space Apps 2021 is "The Power of Ten". This marks an incredible ten years of community, collaboration and problem solving, forming a powerful team of international space agencies working together to make space applications accessible to more communities around the world.

Space Apps Challenge 2020 registered 2,303 projects, of which seven were awarded. This is

  • InfraSave (Best Data Use Award)

InfraSave Solution: The project has two phases. The first features a mobile application called InfraSave which is used to collect data, including geotagged images of the public, on damage to critical infrastructure caused by flooding. The second includes a damage detection algorithm which is used to obtain the extent of damage in critical infrastructure using satellite images before flooding, during and after flooding.

  • Mars Calling (Best Mission Concept Award)

Mars Calling is an immersive Escape Room experience where players work together to address communication challenges between Earth and Mars. In Mars Calling, players take on a range of fun, puzzle-like challenges. Each challenge explores a different aspect of communications, including transmission delay, signal quality, data throttling, and data corruption.

The Escape Room format allowed the team to:

  • Develop a compelling storyline where players will experience a range of emotions from elation to frustration as the clock ticks.

    • Create a situation where players need to collaborate and communicate successfully.
    • Break down the complex problem of communication between Earth and Mars into a series of fun, puzzle-like experiences.
    • Create an informed experience inspired by the real science and technology of communicating with Mars, for example, time delays, signal quality and signal corruption.
    • Immerse players in the challenge and give them agency to find solutions (learn by doing)
  • LLOCUST (Galactic Impact Prize)

The LLOCUST project detects and predicts the comings and goings of locusts as well as their movements in vulnerable areas. Using a machine learning model trained on NASA satellite data on wind, humidity, surface temperatures and vegetation index, all of which are factors that favor the locust population, we grant LLOCUST to create a heat map of the areas most at risk of locust infestation. Through the use of an interactive, AI-powered, and user-friendly website, farmers, city officials and businesses can view our model's detections and forecasts in the form of an interactive map.

  • ASPIRE (Best Use of Science Award)

Our environmental conditions are changing day by day due to natural activities or activities of natural activity that further harm the biodiversity of our earth. Many government agencies and environmentalists are well aware that our biodiversity must be taken care of, but could not due to a lack of tools. With the help of the ASPIRE model, biological diversity can be predicted for future years of species existence. Here, ground and satellite data has been used to produce forecast maps that can help take precautionary measures to save our planet Earth.

  • FireWay (Best Use of Technology Award)

The average construction of a telecommunications satellite costs about $ 300 million, of which about $ 100 million to get started and run for about 15 years. When the fuel is fully utilized to us, the satellite is unable to maintain orbit and begins to drift, lose communication and be useless. FireWay is a new type of universal connector for transporting liquids, gases and electricity.

  • AI Ltruistics (Most Inspirational Prize)

Have you ever dreamed of having Einstein, Marie Curie, Galileo or Dorothy Vaughan as teachers in your science lessons at school? Well, now, thanks to machine learning, chat box, text-to-speech, and AI intelligence synthetic media technologies, it all can be possible with 'AI HEROES', a cutting edge learning platform where you can learn from and be inspired by your "science heroes" to make history. You can learn about their own theories, compare the resources they had in their day with what you have available today thanks to NASA, and maybe even joke and have fun with them about their own stories of life. Let these heroes inspire you to become one yourself in the future.

  • Twilight (Most Inspirational Award)

Created by the Lower East Side Girls' Club, Survivors: Save the Earth is an interactive AR species survival game. Using climate data from NASA, JAXA and ESA, the game provides an enriching and informative way for Earth citizens of all ages to learn more about humanity's impact on the earth. biodiversity and species survival. Playing as an endangered animal of their choice, players learn the true impact of various forms of pollution and habitat loss. To build empathy and illustrate this, they are shown satellite images of the play area that show real environmental data. Players are then encouraged to take non-partisan social, personal and political action to address environmental issues.

The African countries participating in this hackathon are: Senegal, Gabon, Nigeria, Ethiopia, South Africa, Morocco, Cameroon, Ghana, Algeria and Tunisia.

Space Apps 2021 will take place on October 2 and 3, 2021.

Source: Nasa Space Apps Challenge, Space in Africa

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