Reach for the Stars

Two Asteroids Named After Technion Student

Two new asteroids discovered by Technion student Aseel Nama of the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering will be named after her. Nama’s discovery came as part of NASA’s asteroid-hunting campaign.

Undergraduate student Aseel Nama

“I really wanted to take part in this campaign, which is a kind of competition, but NASA insisted that I recruit a team of three people. I explained that I wasn’t able to recruit anyone else, but that this is my dream. Finally, I convinced them to let me compete. It turns out I was the only one-person team and the only Israeli among 116 teams worldwide.”

Haifa-based Nama grew up in Deir al-Asad in the Galilee region. Her studies involve the mastery of segmentation – the division of images into sections – in the laboratory of Prof. Dan Adam. She credits that skill for the asteroid discoveries. “I got a set of photos and videos from NASA to search for new asteroids,” she explains. “I called my ‘team’ ANI (Aseel Nama Israel) and the asteroids I discovered will be called ANI1801 and ANI2001.”