MIT names a minor planet after a local teenage researcher

Posted at 5:04 PM, Oct 31, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-01 16:54:06-04

TORREY PINES, Calif. (KGTV) - The Massachusetts Institute of Technology just named a minor planet after a San Diego teenager who recently completed research that could assist in future droughts. 

The Cambridge School freshman Emily Tianshi was also awarded $20,000 from here work in the prestigious National Broadcam MASTERS Competition in Washington, D.C.  

“I was absolutely shocked,” said the 14-year-old.

Tainshi began studying the needles on Torrey Pines as an eighth grader to see how the trees continue to withstand droughts.  She said the needles are uniquely designed to pull moisture from the air and condense it into water for its own needs.

Her research won science fairs in San Diego and California.  It earned her an invitation to the weeklong Broadcom MASTERS where she competed with and against students from all over the nation.

Tianshi walked away with the second largest prize in the country.

She said she wants to continue her research and eventually “turn into an engineering project where I build a device replicating the Torrey Pine Needle.”

The teenager said her ultimate goal is to become a Stanford-educated doctor.