Pradip Gatkine

Astronomy Graduate Student
University of Maryland College Park

A wanderer of the wonderland...


In a word, I am an explorer. I love travelling to exotic places (well, exotic for me) and experience the beautiful nature, the bustling cities and the blissful towns. Till now, I have set foot on the mountains of Himalayas, the desert of Australia, the beach of Barcelona and the glaciers of Iceland, to quote a few! (More on that on my fun page)

I grew up in the city of Nagpur, India's geographical center and famous for its oranges. As a child I was fascinated by the nightsky and inspired by Astronomy documentaries on Discovery Channel and watching Spirit and Opportunity reach and explore Mars. This inspiration was amplified when I got selected for Indian National Astronomy Olympiad Camp in 2008 after two rigorous exams. With all the lectures and hands-on observations in the camp, a new world of astronomy had opened up for me and I decided to pursue research in astronomy as my career. During the undergrad days, I would grab every opportunity to take up astronomy projects at various astronomical institutions in India. Fast forward to 2014, I came to University of Maryland to pursue my dreams and explore a new world!

Apart from travel, I enjoy nature photography. I love cooking and eating Indian food. Yummy!!

In my leisure time, I play Indian flute (bansuri), listen to Indian music and write some poetry. I also embrace the idea of giving back to the society, especially in the form of education and healthcare (More on that on my fun page).

Other than Astronomy, I enjoy my scaled-down model of Spirit rover that I assembled (Thanks Elizabeth Tarantino for the gift!) and my little quadcopter.