MacArthur Science Research Students Reach For The Stars

March 10, 2023

MacArthur Science Research Students Reach For The Stars - image001MacArthur Science Research students Catherine Purirojejananon, Kevin Tierney, and Phoebe Zivkovich were announced as Semifinalists in the NASA Radioisotope Power Systems Program and Future Engineers Power to Explore challenge. There were 15 semifinalists announced in grades 9-12 in this nationwide event. The competition required students to research Radioisotope Power Systems (RPS) and determine where we should next explore and why it should be explored. NASA's RPS program is a partnership with the Department of Energy designed to deliver power systems and technology for science missions to some of the dustiest, darkest, most distant, and harshest environments in the solar system. RPS has enabled NASA to explore the surface of Mars with the Curiosity and Perseverance rovers, Pluto and beyond with the New Horizons spacecraft, and interstellar space with Voyager 1 and 2. The student projects related to a deeper understanding of Jupiter's Great Red Spot, the impacts of Mars' tidal force on Phobos, and the effects of Plutos' gravitational effect on Charon's tides. "I want to thank Dr. Friedman and Mr. Zausin for always giving their unconditional support to their students. Being a part of science research has opened up the gateway to so many opportunities for me, such as the NASA project," said Catherine Purirojejananon. "This whole thing started out as an assignment that I didn't think much of, but as I started writing, I found that I really enjoyed doing it. Science Research isn't just a class in high school. It's a window for so much more. I had a lot of fun, and I really appreciated the opportunity," said Phoebe Zivkovich. "I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to compete in a NASA competition. I am very thankful for all Science Research has given me. It has taught me to ask for help, and that science is something that cannot be done alone," said Kevin Tierney.