Valley Christian XPRIZE

Indian American-led high school team from San Jose, Calif., hopes to claim another XPRIZE win. (photo provided)

San Jose, Calif.-based Valley Christian High School last month announced that innovative students from the high school, led by several Indian Americans, months after winning an XPRIZE award in May, are looking for their next big XPRIZE win.

Among the team leads are Indian Americans Mihir Kasmalkar, Rohan Viswanathan, Arnav Gattani and Sumira Naroola, as well as Jonah Kim, Micah Kim and Ansel Austin.

The team, Valley Christian Team Ocean Quest, in May were the first-place winners of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Bonus Prize, taking home $800,000 in the $7M Shell Ocean Discovery XPRIZE.

But this time, the high school notes, they will not be going it alone.

The high school announced its involvement in another XPRIZE competition. Their search begins with the $10M ANA Avatar XPRIZE, a four-year endeavor focused on the development of an avatar system.

The San Jose-based high school team will lead an international collaboration of student teams from Asia, London, Seattle, Africa and India, pairing students from around the globe in pursuit of groundbreaking innovation, a news release said.

This network of students will focus their skills in science, technology, engineering, robotics, the arts and business to develop a robotic avatar system set on transporting a human's sense, actions, and presence to a remote location in real-time, leading to a more connected world, the release added.

The team defied all odds by making history as the youngest finalists in any XPRIZE competition competing amongst an elite group of advanced scientific, corporate and university teams. Team Ocean Quest's autonomous underwater vehicle helped to usher in a whole new era in ocean exploration.

"Watching these students has been an inspiration to all of us at the XPRIZE Foundation. We look forward to supporting their quest to motivate other students around the world to engage in innovation that will impact future generations," said Anousheh Ansari, XPRIZE Foundation CEO.

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