The 13th IOAA starts soon! Let’s meet some of the participant countries! In this writing the Brazilian, the Ecuadorian and the Hungarian team will be introduced!

The Brazilian team

The Brazilian team is composed of 5 students (Bruna Junqueira, Giovanna Girotto, Luã de Souza, Lucas Shoji e Raul Teixeira), a Leader (Professor Eugênio Reis), a Pedagogical Leader (Professor Julio Klafke) and two Observers (Professor Thiago Paulin e Professor Heliomárzio Moreira).

“In 2018 we all participated in the Brazilian Astronomy and Astronautics Olympiad (along with about 100 thousand high school students from all over Brazil). The 120 best students went through exams, of which 30 were selected. Then we underwent two intensive training sessions that selected the five most well prepared of us. And then we are here!

We are really anxious about the tests time and we are studying a lot! Beyond that, we are excited about meeting a lot of people and learning several different things.
Thank you for receiving us there! And, for all of us, we hope we all have a good


The Ecuadorian team

The Ecuadorian team consists of 5 members : Marcela Morillo (leader), Daniela Santamaría (high school student, Manuel Moreno (high school student), Diana Sánchez (recently graduated high school student), Bryan Garay (recently graduated high school student).

“The first step of our journey was to win the national selection process, the Ecuadorian Olympiad of Astronomy and Astronautics (OEAA 2018). This process consisted of 3 phases, the first was online through a multiple-choice exam, then a short preparation course for finalists and finally a 4-part test: theoretical, practical, observational and rocket launch in August 2018. Reaching the top 5 positions, we won the national contest, giving us access to the Latin American Olympiad of Astronomy and Astronautics (OLAA 2018), first doing a preparation course at the headquarters of the organizer of the national event, the Technical University of Cotopaxi (UTC).
We traveled to Paraguay for the OLAA event in October 2018, a challenging competition consisting on a series of theoretical tests (individual and group), observational and rocket launch tests. At the end, we achieved multiple recognitions, such as the first bronze medals for Ecuador, merits to the best observational test and best group theory test.
After this successful participation our team leader the Astrophysics, Marcela Morillo, received the news that, Hungary accepted the participation of our team for the IOAA 2019, being the first time that our country participates in this prestigious event.”

Bryan Garay get to know astronomy in his childhood: “My curiosity for knowing what those little points in the sky are, has been present since I was a child, but it became patent, the day I received my first telescope for Christmas, a few years ago. Since then I have been in a constant search for answers about our universe. ”

Diana Sánchez about her favorite area: “An area that has surprised me and challenged my mental schemes has been cosmology, getting to have an approximation to the age of the universe, through a series of mathematical relations, product a succession of scientific contributions, from the constant of the speed of light up to the Hubble constant, demonstrates the depth and reach of this area.”

Daniela Santamaría write about her activities: “Astronomy has become an important part of my life but I do other things. I love learning different languages as English or Italian. I also enjoy playing basketball with friends, and photography, wishing to one day applied it to astronomy.”

Manuel Moreno expect from the IOAA just good things: “My expectations for IOAA 2019 are big, because it is the first time that my country participates in this event, and I am thankful for this opportunity because I believe we will learn not only science, but also values as friendship and teamwork.”

“As a team, the last thing we would like to say to the Hungarians and the rest of the teams from the participating countries, is that we are eager to learn from their cultures, their customs and traditions and, above all, the scientific knowledge in astronomy and related sciences that each one has to share. Regards from the middle of the world 0˚ 0’ 0’’!”


The Hungarian team

As the delegation of the host country, we give all the contestants, team leaders, observers, and guests our kind regards and welcome everyone in Hungary! We hope that every participant will enjoy IOAA 2019, that all you will have a successful Olympiad and that all of you will return home with full of positive experiences!

Please find below short introductions and welcome messages from the members of our Delegation!

Mr. Császár, Kornél: My first experience with astronomy – reading some interesting books – goes back to when I was seven years old; however, after that, I somehow lost my interest in it. My interest has risen again in the second year of high school because of a geography presentation. Since then, I have dug into this field and have been participated at several astronomical camps as well. I’ve jumped at the opportunity of the IOAA qualifying contest in Hungary; last year, I was close to become a member of the Hungarian team, while this year, I finally did it!

Mr. Kozák, András: Some years ago, I saw a movie about the Hubble Space Telescope that immediately captured my interest. Getting acquainted with the universe really amazed me, not to mention the stunning images of galaxies, nebulae and planets. Over the years, astronomy has become a hobby of mine, and now the Olympiad is a great opportunity to practice it.

Mr. Mendei, Barna: I have been interested in natural sciences since I was very young, and astronomy was always part of my interests. I heard about the IOAA approximately two years ago from my physics teachers at school, and in special classes. I am very glad to participate in this competition, because astronomy is very close to my heart; however, I also take part in other events and competitions related to natural sciences. The Olympiad is important for me for several reasons. First, lots of students have the opportunity to show what they know about this certain subject. Secondly, they can get to know other young astronomers around the world, travel to exciting places of the planet and get a huge amount of experience. I hope all contestants are going to have a great time and great results this year!

Mr. Tófalusi, Ádám: My name is Ádám Tófalusi, I graduated from high school this year. Basically, I am interested in physics, but I also like astrophysics. Therefore I have participated in our national astronomical competition, so I could get acquainted with this field better. I think the Olympiad is an important thing, because it can motivate talented students to learn and allows to make international relationships.

Mr. Varga, Vázsony: I have been interested in astronomy for a long time. Although I didn’t know what it exactly means, I often said that later I would like to be an astrophysicist. The qualifying competition taught me a lot about this discipline – and I still love it! Maybe even more than before. I hope you will have a nice time and a successful Olympiad in our country!

Guest team members:

Mr. Bacsó, Zétény: My youthful enthusiasm about astronomy did not go away, because I have got acquainted with novels by Jules Verne in time. In my free time, I watch series and videos, read books and news, and, if I can, I handicraft or go out with my friends. I wish all teams perseverance, good memories and experiences! I hope that you can get to know Hungary. And you should try lángos! The most important thing is lángos!

Mr. Bánhidi, Dominik: I am interested in astronomy since I was young. After deciding to take it more seriously, I joined an astronomical club. I think that this competition is quite important, because you can learn a lot before you go to a university; that is why I am participating, too. Besides this, the Olympiad gives you the opportunity to make relationships with people, who have the same interests but have different cultural backgrounds.

Ms. Rajmon, Imola: Thanks to my long-term interest in physics, I was gripped also by astronomy about 3 years ago. Besides the chance and luck, I have started to take part this competition encouraged by two girls, who have been also participated at IOAA before. I think that the Olympiad is a prestigious competition with full of experiences, and it can teach us useful things that we can use in the future. Maybe others have already said, but I also want to wish all the other teams good luck and a lot of memorable experiences here!

Mr. Soós, Benjámin: I’ve been interested in science, especially in astronomy a long time ago. I have learned a lot during the preparation for the Olympiad, which will be surely useful during my later studies – regarding not just the curriculum but also the working of this discipline.

Mr. Tordai, Tegze: As a child, I was already interested in the mysteries of the Universe and in space travel. When I applied for participating in the Hungarian IOAA competition, I did not realize first that this is a qualifying contest of an international event. I have been surprised, because it has been quite different than I expected before – and I like it! Beside participating at IOAA, the most important experience for me is to see how research works.

Team leadres:

Dr. Szalai, Tamás: astronomer, PhD in Physics, postdoctoral fellow (University of Szeged)

Mr. Udvardi, Imre: physics and math high-school teacher (Kálmán Könyves High School, Budapest), Hungarian IOAA coordinator

Mr. Dálya, Gergely: physicist, PhD student (Eötvös University, Budapest), former IOAA contestant

Ms. Kalup, Csilla: MSc student in Astronomy (Eötvös University, Budapest), former IOAA contestant