Planet Talk

About Us

Our Mission

Planet Talk is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to promoting awareness of Astronomy and providing opportunities to youth, in our local community. We provide access to telescopes and also conduct workshops and talks with prominent astronomers, researchers and industry leaders.

Founder's Message

Ever since I saw the NEOWISE comet on a stargazing trip with my parents, I got drawn to astronomy. I am fascinated by the vast expanse of our cosmos and the fact that we are still learning about the large unknown objects in space. My interest grew with the launch of the James Web Space Telescope (JWST) and the rich images being sent by it. Astronomy has been an active field recently with the discovery of many young galaxies and nebulae. The images sent by JWST gives us a glimpse of the early universe.

As a VP of my high school’s Astrophysics club, I realized how difficult it was for students like me, to have access to the latest development in space. This includes access to role models, telescopes and even literature which can create the next generation of young scientists in Astrophysics. During my astrophysics club meetings, it was becoming apparent to me that it was hard to observe what we are discussing with simple stargazing events without access to telescopes.  Besides this, I was one of the only girls in the club which was symbolic of a field represented mostly by men. In order to reduce the barriers of entry for youth to this exciting field, I decided that we need to provide access to telescopes and role models in this field.

I formed this organization to provide access to telescopes to local middle and high school astronomy clubs and also provide avenues of exposure to scientists in the form of podcasts, and interviews.

Join me in Bringing the Universe Closer to Our Youth!
– Sanika Iyer



- Outreach and Education Lead @ Hands On STEM non profit.
- Volunteer @ Lick Observatory
- Head of Philanthropy @ National Charity League


- Research Internship @ UC Santa Cruz (Science Internship Program)
-Space Enterpreneurship, Computation Techniques in Physics @ UC Berkeley
- Public Programs Coordinator @ Lick Observatory
- Vice President @ Lynbrook Astrophysics Club


- Blogger @ Planet Talk Blog
- Water Polo @ Lynbrook
- English and Math Tutoring for ESL kids
- Hiking, Traveling, Reading


Sanika Iyer


Hi! I am Sanika Iyer, a senior at Lynbrook High School and founder of PlanetTalk a non-profit trying to democratize access to telescope and other resources for the youth in our community. I am passionate about science, specifically astrophysics and am learning new things everyday! I love volunteering as a Public Programs Coordinator at the Lick Observatory and attending to disabled children at Shining Stars as a Ticktocker in the National Charity League. At school, I am part of the leadership team of our Astrophysics club and conduct programs at Hands on STEM. Along with my STEM adventures, I am a debater and play water polo. When I am not researching, I am reading, hiking, traveling, volunteering or playing with my dog, Lola!

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