Astronomi Yudhiakto Pramudya, Ph.D

Yogyakarta. Inspired by the noble actions made by an American astronomer who created various astronomy learning media for the visually impaired, Yudhiakto Pramudya, Ph.D., a lecturer from Physics Education Study Program of Universitas Ahmad Dahlan, was interested in following the astronomer’s footsteps by carrying out community service activities in terms of astronomy education for the visually impaired. In collaboration with Hafez Murtza, a researcher in the field of astronomy from Universe Awareness Malaysia, he submitted a research grant proposal to the International Astronomical Union – Office of Astronomy Development (OAD).
On December 4th, the proposal was approved for a grant of 7000 euros or around 115 million rupiah. The research proposal is entitled Indonesia – Malaysia Project on Astronomy Education Using Tactile Image. “We agree that although astronomy is closely related to a person’s visual ability to study space phenomena, it does not mean that visually-impaired people are not entitled to study astronomy. In the realm of education, no students are left behind”, explained Yudhiakto.
To get a wider impact, both Yudhiakto and Hafez are collaborating to design a project related to Planetarium Tactile, which is an arrangement of the solar system where the constellations can be touched. The Planetarium Tactile will be made using a 3-dimensional printer.
According to Yudhiakto, OAD provides research grants every year for the development of Astronomy. The selection process requires patience and persistence, because it is processed through several stages. It usually starts in May and the final result is announced in December. “Complete information on the grant can be accessed on http://www.astro4dev.org/aboutiauoad/cfp/”, explained Yudhiakto. (H3)