Teens wow at defence science congress

Started in 1992, the annual YDSP is an initiative by the DSTA and DSO National Laboratories.
Started in 1992, the annual YDSP is an initiative by the DSTA and DSO National Laboratories. ST PHOTO: LIM SIN THAI

It sounds like the movies - using data analytics to comb through social media and video feeds to track crime suspects in real time and predict their next moves.

But this was actually a project done last year by two students who took part in the Young Defence Scientists Programme (YDSP) under the mentorship of Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) engineers.

The duo, Dunman High School Year 6 student Soh Xin Yi, 18, and Raffles Institution Year 5 student Wang Jia Dong, 17, were among about 450 budding scientists from 18 schools who showcased their work at yesterday's YDSP Congress at the Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre.

Xin Yi said the project allowed them to use data analytics in real life and to work on more than 20 data analytic techniques.

"Being able to experiment with such a broad range of techniques, and gaining insights into the work of defence engineers, was certainly a great learning experience," she said.

Started in 1992, the annual YDSP is an initiative by the DSTA and DSO National Laboratories. More than 70 projects were shown yesterday - the culmination of research attachments, customised camps and experiential learning modules held last year.

At the event, Senior Minister of State for Defence Maliki Osman said: "These are exciting times for the field of defence technology... It is vital to nurture young, talented scientists and engineers like those we have with us today."

About 90 awards and 30 scholarships in science and technology were presented to participants at the event.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 19, 2017, with the headline 'Teens wow at defence science congress'. Print Edition | Subscribe