Department of Science and Technology (DST) ushers in new schemes encompassing the entire ecosystem of Science, Technology and Innovation while creating ground for enhanced international collaborations
DST’s Investment into S&T system jumped to a whooping 90 percent compared to preceding 5 years period from 2009-10 to 2013-14
Empowering the young and reversing the Brain Drain to Brain Gain: Several new schemes to attract Young Researchers viz. National Post Doctoral Fellowship; Early Career Research Award; Overseas Doctoral Fellowship; and Overseas Post Doctoral Fellowship; and Teacher Associates for Research Excellence have been launched. These schemes have almost doubled the opportunities for young and aspiring researchers for carrying out R&D in their chosen areas of science and engineering.
Bringing the best of Global Science and Scientists to India: VAJRA scheme initiated to bring best global science and scientists to India including NRIs.
Empowering Women Scientists: To address gender imbalance, a new scheme viz. KIRAN was launched and a pilot scheme VIGYAN JYOTI has been started to attract and encourage young women scientists.
AWSAR scheme launched to encourage young scientists to write popular articles on their research pursuits.
Boost to Innovation and Start-up Activity: A national programme titled NIDHI (National Initiative for Developing & Harnessing Innovations) which addresses the entire value chain of Innovations has been launched. Budget for innovation and Start-up activities increased by 5 fold in 2018-19 compared to 2013-14.
Taking Innovation to Schools: To encourage young students to think innovatively, a new programme MANAK (Million Minds Augmenting National Aspirations and Knowledge) has been launched to target 10 lakh students every year from class 6 to 10.
Mission on Cyber-Physical-Systems announced in 2018-19 Budget.
New Public-Private Partnerships forged to offer opportunities for collaborative R&D between academia and industry.
Aligning with national agenda, new schemes such as Super Computing Mission; Advanced Manufacturing; Waste Management; and Science and Technology of Yoga and Meditation (SATYAM) initiated.
Excellent progress made in programmes on Clean Energy and Water.
International Connect: New international S&T collaboration to connect with the best global science initiated such as participation in Thirty Meter Telescope Project; and India-Israel Industrial R&D and Technological Innovation Fund of USD 40 million.
Department of Science and Technology
The Department of Science & Technology (DST) supports and encourages the whole gamut of S&T ecosystem from seeding and capacity building in the cutting-edge research areas; translational research; technology development and deployment; innovation and startup ecosystem; and international collaborations. This is achieved by supporting S&T infrastructure, scientists and students in academic and R&D institutions across the country. Besides this, the Department nurtures the following — Science & Engineering Research Board (SERB) which is a Statutory Body that promotes extramural R&D; Technology Development Board (Statutory Body) that promotes commercialization of indigenous technologies; 20 Autonomous Institutions which undertake research in specialized domains or provide scientific services; 5 professional bodies that promote Science and Engineering related activities; and 2 subordinate offices viz. Survey of India and National Atlas and Thematic Organization (NATMO) which provide survey and mapping services.
Boost to S&T Investment
As the figures indicate, DST has seen a substantial increase in the budgetary allocations over the last four years. It has increased by almost 60% in absolute terms from Rs. 3195.39 Crores in 2013-14 to Rs. 5134.88 in 2018-19.
New R&D Initiatives and Output
SERB Distinguished Investigator Award (SERB-DIA)
This is a one-time career award to reward good performance as well as to motivate ongoing PIs to perform exceedingly well. This positive reinforcement strategy would effectively improve the productivity of research undertaken and overall efficiency of the research ecosystem. A total of 35 awards will be awarded per year, each including a fellowship of Rs. 15,000/- per month for three years. In addition, the PI can also choose a research grant, subject to submission of research proposal and its acceptance by SERB based on the peer review.
Visiting Advanced Joint Research (VAJRA) Faculty Scheme
Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) has instituted VAJRA Faculty Scheme for distinguished overseas scientists and academicians including Non-resident Indians (NRIs) and Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) to create an opportunity to contribute to growth of research and development in the country. The scheme will bring the best global science and scientists to India. It is also expected to enhance global ranking of our institutions. The area of research to be undertaken by the Adjunct/Visiting Faculty should be of cutting-edge and interest to India.
The VAJRA Faculty will reside in India up to 3 months in a year and they will be provided a lump-sum amount of US $ 15000 in the first month of residence and US $ 10000 p.m. after that. The faculty would be physically available for 1-3 months in Indian institutions but maintain an adjunct faculty/scientist status round the year and keep the collaborative lab and co-guided Ph.D. students in India for the whole term providing round the year mentoring and support to students and other researchers. In the first round of selection, a total of 43 foreign faculties including NRIs and OCIs have been recommended out of more than 250 applications for undertaking research visits for collaborative research in our Academic and Research Institutions.
Overseas Visiting Doctoral Fellowship
The fellowship scheme was formulated in 2015-16 to facilitate overseas collaborative research training for Indian Ph.D. Scholars registered in Indian institutions. Fellowships will be implemented in overseas institutions of repute and areas of importance to the country. Fellowship amount of US $ 2000 p.m. for a period of up to 12 months will be provided. One visit by the Indian supervisor to the overseas institution and overseas faculty to the host Indian institution of the student during the tenure of the fellowship will also be supported. It is estimated that 350 fellowships will be awarded for the period 2016-19.
Early Career Research Award
A new scheme viz. Early Career Research Award (ECRA) launched in 2015-16 to provide quick research support to the researchers who are in their early career for pursuing exciting and innovative research in frontier areas of science and engineering. The scheme aims to minimise the time required for the young scientist to initiate their research. The award carries a research grant up to Rs. 50 lakhs for a period of three years. More than 600 young scientists have responded in November 2015 for the Award. 1315 young faculties/scientists have been supported under this scheme in the past three years.
National Postdoctoral Fellowship (N-PDF) Scheme
In order to attract and retain young scientists and discourage brain drain immediately after Ph.D. in academic/R&D institutions, a National Postdoctoral Fellowship (N-PDF) scheme was launched in 2015-16. It aims to identify motivated young researchers and provide them support for doing research in frontier areas of science and engineering. The fellow will work under a mentor, and it is expected that the training will provide him/her a platform to develop as an independent researcher. 600-700 young scientists are supported every year.
Teacher Associates for Research Excellence (TARE) Mobility Scheme
This scheme, launched in 2017, aims to facilitate mobility of faculty members working in a regular capacity in state universities / colleges and in private academic institutions to carry out research work in an established public funded institution such as IITs, IISc, IISERs, NITs, CSIR, ICAR, ICMR labs and other central institutions and central universities, located preferably closer to the institution where the faculty member is working. Research work will be carried out to ensure that the principal investigator continues to work in the host institute as well as his / her parent institute on mutually agreed terms between the PI and the mentor. Provision of fellowship amount of Rs. 5,000 p.m., contingency grant of Rs. 5 lakh per annum and overhead for a period of 3 years has been made. Maximum of 500 such awards would be granted per year.
Scheme for funding High Risk-High Reward Research
SERB has approved a new and significant initiative in 2015-16 to support proposals that are conceptually new and risky, and if successful, expected to have a paradigm-shifting influence on the S&T landscape.
Science and Heritage Research Initiative (SHRI)
The objective of SHRI is to promote the scientific research and intervention to preserve, restore and development of new material/methods/tools to strengthen Heritage Science in sectors such as textiles, metal works, crafts, ceramics etc. and diffuse this to artisan clusters. The programme was launched by Hon’ble Minister S&T on 13/10/2017 during IISF-2017. Around 100 proposals are received under first call for proposals closed in February 2018.
Empowering Women Scientists
In 2014, DST took a giant step forward and brought all the women-centric schemes & programs under one ambit named KIRAN (Knowledge Involvement in Research Advancement through Nurturing). KIRAN includes women-exclusive schemes for encouraging women to foster their career by undertaking research not only in science & engineering but also for societal benefit besides making a career through entrepreneurship and training in intellectual property management.
Women Scientists Scheme (WOS) specifically addresses challenges confronting women in realm of S&T who had a break in career by providing suitable opportunities to those who desire to return to mainstream science. KIRAN supports around 500 women every year in R&D, societal applications of S&T and training on Intellectual Property Management, etc. In 2017-18, a new component ‘Indo-U.S. Fellowship for Women in STEMM’ (WISTEMM) has been launched in collaboration with IUSSTF. This initiative aims to provide opportunities to 20 (Women Overseas Internship: 10; Women Overseas Fellowship: 10) Indian women scientists, engineers and technologists to undertake international collaborative research in premier institutions in the U.S.A. to enhance their research capacities and capabilities.
Team-KIRAN also took another giant step forward in 2017-18 when ‘Indira Gandhi Delhi Technical University for Women (IGDTUW)’, Delhi, the 7th women-only University was selected under the umbrella of CURIE (Consolidation of University Research for Innovation and Excellence in Women Universities) programme for budgetary support towards development of research facilities and infrastructure.
Vigyan Jyoti: To address the gender imbalance in higher education in several fields of Science & Technology (S&T) and offset their glaring low representation in jobs (teaching faculty/scientist/ administration), a new scheme — Vigyan Jyoti — has been conceptualised and a pilot project was launched in 2017-18 at 14 academic institutions of repute viz. IIT Kanpur, IIT Mandi, IIT Guwahati, IIT Bhubaneswar, IIT Hyderabad, IIT Palakkad, IIT Mumbai, IIT Indore, IIT Gandhinagar, IISER Pune, Anna University Chennai, IGDTUW, Delhi, IGNOU, New Delhi. This new initiative will provide for interventions at every level of education, right from Middle School onwards, to sustain girls’ career in S&T domain and gradually remove the inequity.
MANAK (Million Minds Augmenting National Aspiration and Knowledge)
In the context of Start-up India initiative of the Government, the scheme has been launched to foster a culture of scientific innovation among school children of class VI to class X. This will significantly broaden the base of our innovation pyramid to produce future entrepreneurs in large numbers. The programme has been targeted to encourage children to visualise/analyse needs of the society and inspire them to devise innovative ideas to address them.
Under the scheme the thrust is on the power of relevant ‘original ideas’ having the potential to address societal needs through Science & Technology, especially in the context of national flagship programmes such as Swachh Bharat, Digital India, Swasth Bharat, Make in India, Energy, Environment, Sanitation, etc. Top 10 lakh ideas will be scouted from 5 lakh schools across the country in a financial year. 1 lakh top ideas will be shortlisted for an INSPIRE Award of Rs. 5000/- each, for preparation of a project/model and participation in District Level Exhibition & Project Competition (DLEPC). Out of this, 10,000 best projects will be shortlisted for State Level Exhibition & Project Competition (SLEPC) and top 1000 awardees shortlisted at State Level will be provided Rs. 20,000/- each for development of improved prototype for National level event.
1000 best projects will be showcased at NLEPC and top 60 projects shortlisted for National Awards. These 60 best models/projects will also be showcased at the Annual Festival of Innovations at Rashtrapati Bhawan, New Delhi.
National award winners of MANAK showcased their projects
at ‘Festival of Innovation’ at Rashtrapati Bhawan
Attracting Young Talent to Science
•- In order to attract students at an early age to study science and to promote creative thinking and innovation, 3,97,400 students were offered Inspire Award.
•- In order to attract students at an early age to study science and to promote creative thinking and innovation, 3,97,400 students were offered Inspire Award.
•- 1,50,000 students of intermediate level were provided internship in 708 Inspire Science Camps.
•- 49,293 INSPIRE Scholarships have been offered to very bright students (top 1% of +2 Board examination) for pursuing study in various science related courses like Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics, etc. at the undergraduate and up to postgraduate stage at various colleges and academic Institutions in the country along with opportunity to engage in research activities by attaching with the Mentors during vacation period for inculcating research culture from a young age. The value of each scholarship is Rs. 80000 per year, including Rs. 20000 as mentorship cost for research.
•- 4000 INSPIRE Fellowship have been offered to young students in the last three years for carrying out their doctoral degree programme in all areas of basic and applied sciences including Medicine, Agriculture, Veterinary, etc. for 5 years at recognized Universities/Academic Institutions/Laboratories in the country.
•- 715 young researchers have been provided an attractive opportunity as an INSPIRE Faculty for developing independent scientific profiles. The value of each INSPIRE Faculty is Rs. 80000 per month with 3.3% annual increment along with Rs. 7 lakh per year as Research Grant for a period of 5 years.
Augmenting Writing Skills for Articulating Research (AWSAR):
Realizing that in India, over 20,000 youth are awarded PhD and Post-Doctoral (PD) Fellowship in S&T and to tap their latent talent to popularise & communicate science and inculcate scientific temperament in society, DST has devised AWSAR. This ambitious initiative will encourage, empower and endow these youths to write popular articles about their research pursuits and the best entries will be published in newspapers, magazines, blogs, social media, etc. The program was launched by Hon’ble Minister of S&T and ES on 24 January 2018. Each year, 100 best entries from PhD Scholars and 20 from PD Fellows will be awarded Rs. 10,000/- each with a Certificate of Appreciation. Besides, cash prizes of Rs.1,00,000/-, Rs. 50,000/- and Rs.25,000/- respectively would be given to 3 leading stories from the 100 submitted by PhD scholars and Rs.1,00,000/- for the most outstanding story of selected 20 from PDFs.
DST has also initiated workshops for writing scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals with the American Chemical Society (ACS), one of the oldest and the largest publishing houses in the world. The first such workshop was organised in Tezpur University on 8 January 2018 and was attended by 250 early career researchers from across the North Eastern States of the country.
Ease of Doing Science
To bring greater transparency, ease of access to information and quick processing, all extramural R&D projects under Science & Engineering Research Board (SERB) have been brought under an online platform from submission to peer-reviews to decision making. Efforts are going on to bring the remaining schemes under online processing as quickly as possible.
R&D in Autonomous Institutions
During the Last four years (2014-18), research outputs from the autonomous institutes of DST are summarized as below:
Push for Digital India
National Supercomputing Mission
It is a visionary programme to enable India to leapfrog to the league of world class computing power nations. The NDA Government approved the Supercomputing Mission at a total cost of Rs. 4500 cr in March 2015. The Mission envisages installing a vast supercomputing grid comprising of more than 70 high-performance computing facilities. The Mission also includes development of highly professional High-Performance Computing (HPC) aware human resource for meeting challenges of development of these applications. Supercomputing capability would add a great value to realize the goals of Digital India. The 6 supercomputing systems in Phase I are to be made operational shortly.
Indian Heritage in Digital Space (IHDS):
The Indian Digital Heritage (IDH) Project is a unique initiative of the DST supporting collaborative projects between researchers in the areas of technology and humanities for the digital documentation and interpretation of tangible and intangible heritage. The project highlights the art, architecture and cultural legacy of the world heritage site of Hampi in Karnataka, the medieval capital of the Vijaynagara dynasty.
As an outcome of the IDH Scheme, a total of 37 generic technologies, 7 prototypes and scaled models have been developed and demonstrated. These technologies are generic in nature and thus can be applied on any monuments. Developed technologies broadly relates to Murals, Knowledge bank, Interfaces, Intangible, Memorialization, Design, Crafts, the 3D Printing, Features, Resurrection, Ontologies, Representation, 3D Surface, Preservation, Immersion, Reconstruction, Haptic, Walkthrough, Scaling etc.
Three Start-up Companies spinned off from IDH research and technologies.
Networked Programme on Imaging Spectroscopy and Applications (NISA)
Imaging Spectroscopy & Applications (NISA) is a cluster based multidisciplinary networked scheme to promote research on various aspects of Imaging Spectroscopy and Applications (ISA). This scheme is expected to evolve reference standards, protocols, database and research methodologies – for adaptation in various fields relevant to society. This networked scheme has 37 projects in seven theme areas (such as geology, agriculture, forestry, water, snow and glacier ice, urban & built-in materials and algorithms).
Outcome of this project will add new dimension to India’s natural resource exploration strategies, resource inventory. The scientific understanding in each thematic area emerging from this networked project will also fill the gaps in present understanding on this subject globally. ISA being the current and futuristic technique, the proposed networked project will certainly pave way for technology development, generating human resource in the country.
As part of NISA scheme, 70 JRFs are working towards their PhDs in this advanced field of Imaging Spectroscopy & Application
Interdisciplinary Cyber-Physical-Systems (ICPS)
DST has identified Interdisciplinary Cyber Physical Systems (ICPS) as one of the emerging fields, progress in which is expected to have significant impact on health care, urban transportation, water distribution, energy, urban air quality, manufacturing and governance. The complex socio-technical systems, involving interactions between ‘cyber’ and ‘physical’ are addressed by CPS technologies. The R&D activities envisioned under this program will provide a great fillip to Indian manufacturing through invention of new products and services, and creation of skilled human resource at all levels (from technicians to, researchers, and entrepreneurs). It is also expected to become a key contributor in realizing the vision of a “Digital India” and for economic growth.
The ICPS division is working on the development of the National Mission on ICPS (NM-ICPS). CPS and the associated streams, and all aspects of research will be coordinated under the umbrella of NM-ICPS.
During the year 2016-17, ICPS division received around 1500 proposals, which are being processed for support. It includes outcome oriented cluster projects, technology developmental projects and HRD activities
Epidemiology Data & Analytics (EDA):
The objective of the programme is to carryout analytics over the data, examine and evaluate data about epidemiology, diseases burden, clinical trials being generated all over the country. For the purpose DST will partner with Digital India, DeITY, DBT and ICMR and facilitate seamless access of the data. The EDA scheme initiated. An advanced data analytics technology platform is being created to meet the stakeholder’s requirements.
- Big Data Initiative –
Training and Capacity building:34 Training programmes across the country were organized during 2015-16 on latest technologies of big data and analytics. The course curriculum was standardise for a duration of 10 days at a maximum cost of Rs. 6:00 Lakhs and supplied to all institutions conducted the training programmes. Overall, under the training programme, a total of around 2000 faculty, researchers and Under Graduate and Post-Graduate student were trained under the scheme. Similarly, 15 National Conferences/Workshops on Data Science were supported to various universities, engineering colleges and other academic institutions across the country. The Conferences/Workshop also included one day practical and hand-on experience.
New directed research programme on “Quantum Information Science and Technology (QuST)”:
Quantum Information Science and Technology (QuST) promises to revolutionize the future computation and communication systems which will ultimately have huge impact on the Nation and our society as a whole. In order to evolve and finalize the research topics & thrust areas of QuST, two Brain Storming Meetings were organised, one at Centre for High Energy Physics, IISc, Bangalore and another at HRI, Allahabad.
ICPS Division has initiated a new directed research programme on “Quantum Information Science and Technology (QuST)” with the following broad objectives:
- – Development and demonstration of quantum computers.
- – Development and demonstration of quantum communication & cryptography.
- – Development of quantum-enhanced and inspired technology.
- – Development of advanced mathematical quantum techniques, algorithms and theory of quantum information systems.
Development of a cluster based networked programme under directed research to meet the QuST objectives is going on.
Make In India — Technology Development & Commercialisation
- Advanced Manufacturing Technology (AMT) Programme
Aligning with the ‘Make in India’ agenda of the Government, the Department has initiated a programme to promote development of advance manufacturing technologies in the country. AMT program was initiated in in October 2015 and 45 project proposals have been supported till date. During the second call 256 proposals were received with a focus on Design tools and process innovations, modelling & simulation platforms, Digital Manufacturing, Flexible scale manufacturing, Additive manufacturing Smart Manufacturing Advanced Robotics (AR) & Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT) wearable low power electronics including energy harvesting & sensor Networks etc.
Technical Research Centres
The Finance Minister, during his budget speech of 2014-15, announced setting-up of five Technical Research Centres (TRCs) in the existing autonomous institutions of the Department of Science & Technology. Technical Research Centres (TRCs) were established in 2015-16 in five DST institutions namely, SCTIMST, Trivandrum, ARCI, Hyderabad, JNCASR, Bengaluru, IACS, Kolkata and SNBNCBS, Kolkata.
Brief achievements of TRCs are as following.
Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology (SCTIMST), Trivandrum: 4 projects on neuro-prosthetic devices, 7 projects on cardiovascular devices, 3 projects on hard tissues devices, 6 projects on biological and combinational products and 8 projects on product/material evaluation/ support were initiated during the year and they recorded good progress.
International Advanced Research Centre for Powder Metallurgy and New Materials (ARCI), Hyderabad: Activities carried out under the project were in the areas of – solar energy, energy storage, energy efficiency, energy conversion, electric/hybrid vehicle systems, etc. One Indian patent was granted in 2014 and 25 Indian patent applications are filed till date. and one more is in the process of getting filed. One international patent has been granted during 2014 -2018
Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR), Bengaluru: Development of 7 technologies is in progress, 15 Indian and PCT applications were filed, one start-up ‘Avinir’ was incubated which would deal with DNA probes having potential for various applications, including diagnostics. Another startup, which would deal with development of anti-bacterial for use in paints and surgical instruments is under incubation.
Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science (IACS), Kolkata and S.N. Bose National Centre for Basic Sciences, Kolkata: Both the institutions took steps to establish the necessary laboratory facilities for accelerating applied research.
Partnering with MHRD for Uchchatar Avishkar Yojana (UAY)
SERB is partnering with MHRD for UAY projects and funds those projects identified by the Apex Committee constituted for the purpose. UAY is expected to enhance industry-academia interaction and encourage industry relevant R&D by using the best of human resource and infrastructure in our academic institutions. The share of SERB funding will be 25%, while MHRD will contribute 50% and industry the remaining 25%. The projects funded under this scheme will be named as “UAY SERB” projects. The first batch of 39 projects are being supported with SERB share of Rs. 30 crores.
- Collaboration in Impacting Research Innovation and Technology (IMPRINT) Project
The Department of Science & Technology (DST) has joined hands with Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) to implement IMPRINT projects. IMPRINT projects will address major societal and developmental needs such as healthcare, information and communication technology, energy, sustainable habitat, nano technology, water resources and river systems, advanced materials, security and defence, and environment and climate. 12 projects in different domain areas particularly in nanotechnology and Advanced Materials have been funded by SERB of DST.
- Collaboration in Phase 2 of Impacting Research Innovation and Technology (IMPRINT -2)
The second phase of IMPRINT-2 with a total budget of Rs. 970.5 crore has been launched in March 2018. DST and MHRD will jointly steer this national initiative. SERB will be nodal agency for implementing IMPRINT-2. IMPRINT-2 is proposed to be undertaken in a more inclusive manner by expanding the catchment of implementing institutions, by adopting a more demand-driven strategy of solution development and by incorporating the specific externalities of the states of India so as to make end-user translation and technology adoption easier.
In order to simplify and streamline the process, attract wider participation of stakeholders including industry and sharpen the focus, a new and revised version of IMPRINT, IMPRINT Round II has now been envisaged which will be steered jointly by MHRD and Department of Science & Technology (DST) through Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB). Core mandate of IMPRINT II will remain as:
- – Develop products/processes and viable technologies for addressing the identified challenges in the different domains.
- – Formulate and develop focused translational projects against identified technology thrust areas.
- – Evolve new technology transfer models for enabling technology diffusion to industry and stakeholders.
- – Align the projects with the needs of various industry sectors and the States of India, in order to achieve end-user translation.
- – Facilitate building capability and competence in identified technology thrust areas in the various HEIs and universities, in order to plug the demand-supply gap of human resources in specific areas of need.
The faculty members and researchers in all Government of India funded Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), especially IITs/NITs/IISERs/IIITs/CUs, who are pursuing research in engineering and technology are eligible to submit proposals in IMPRINT II as the Principal Investigator (PI).
Recognizing the need to facilitate increased Public Private Partnerships, the SERB has approved a scheme that provides an opportunity for collaborative research between academic institutions and industry. Upto 50% cost to be provided by DST for the project after ascertaining the usefulness and sound scientific foundations of the project. This scheme aims to bridge the gap between public funded research and industrial R&D. The new scheme seeks to target solution driven research to address industry specific problems.
Technology Mission for Indian Railways (TMIR)
The programme is collaboration between the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Ministry of Railways (MoR), Ministry of Human Resource Development and Ministry of Industry on an investment sharing model for taking up identified research projects for applied research and use on Indian Railways. The objective is to develop state-of-the-art technologies defined by needs related to Indian conditions. DST has agreed to contribute Rs.75 crore in the TMIR. A MoU has been signed between DST, MoR and MHRD to synergise efforts of these ministries for Technology Mission.
A detailed information of 39 technologies developed and demonstrated in field through technology development programmes has been compiled. Some illustrative examples of demonstrated technologies are as following:
- – Continuous Ragi Mudde Making Machine: The production of ragi mudde in large scale was felt very difficult to many catering institutions, student hostels, industries and restaurants due to existing manual method of batch type operations. It is a quite cumbersome, manual process that under goes three stages to get the final product: preparation of ragi porridge and addition of ragi powder followed by vigorous mixing and final cooking. It is then made in to round balls.
The design and development of continuous ragi mudde (finger millet ball) machine has been worked out to develop a commercially viable prototype machine, which can produce ragi mudde continuously in a hygienic manner, economically and reducing the drudgery of a cooking chef. Our Hon’ble Former Prime Minister Sri H. D. DeveGowda inaugurated the commercially viable machine.
- – InDiatel –InDiatel is a device that is designed to acquire various physiological data from patients suffering from diabetes. The captured physiological data can be sent to doctors, nursing stations and clinics using wireless communication. This system uses Wi-Fi technology for communication. Medical specialists can monitor the health of the patients from distant locations. The system can be wirelessly connected to a desktop, laptop, netbook or similar computer system with a standard Microsoft Windows. IndiaTel has been developed as a product in association with M/s TMI Systems Bangalore and launched on 8/12/17 by VIT, Vellore.
- – Manufacturing Hybrid Light Weight, High Strength and Glossy Finish, Polymeric Composites from Marble & Granite Waste Stream: The technology is developed for making green composites by utilisation of marble and granite wastes. The developed hybrid green composites can be used as viable alternatives for timber, synthetic wood and plastics for use in civil infrastructure. To generate awareness and confidence, an Industry Institution Enclave (IIE) 2017 was organized in Coimbatore where hybrid green composites made from marble wastes were showcased. Networking’s with few promising entrepreneurs and start-ups have also been established for commercial exploitation.
- – Wireless Sensor Network Enabled Earlier Real Time Detection of Spoilage in Stored Grain: Food grain spoilage is an important social issue faced by our country. To monitor the spoilage, a low cost and ultra low-power indigenous wireless sensor node has been designed and demonstrated. The device offers features like real-time wireless sensor network based monitoring, detection of food grain spoilage by noninvasive method, portable handheld based spoilage inspection tool with wireless data acquisition using Wi-Fi and GSM, Internet of Things (IoT) based remote monitoring of acquired data and N/W coded wireless sensor network powered information kiosk for local monitoring. It can be a good replacement for conventional less-efficient temperature cables installed for food spoilage detection.
- – Detection of the optimum Fermentation point during Tea manufacturing process: Fermentation, an important process in the tea manufacturing cycle, determines the quality of the tea. Both over and under fermentation degrades the quality of produced tea. Proper end-point of fermentation can be determined by the generated aroma peak, which in tea industry parlance is known as second nose. This device can be used in determining this second nose (optimum fermentation end-point) during tea manufacturing process.
Physiological data recorder: CMC daq is a small versatile recording system designed for physiological data. It is suitable for human recordings and it has full electrical isolation. CMC Daq technology transferred last year is being manufactured by TMI Systems for multi-centric validation and marketing.
Design of Pulse-jet Filtration Apparatus Two test rigs, a pulse-jet filtration test rig and an industrial filtration rig have been developed. Pulse-jet Filtration Instrument can be used for the assessment of filtration performance of filter media (in flat form) challenged with aerosol; whereas Standardized Industrial test rig can be used for the assessment of filtration performance of filter media in tubular form similar to industrial set up maintaining clean air requirement.
The technology transfer event and one day workshop on the filter media characterization was organized at NIT Jalandhar on December 15, 2014. NIT Jalandhar has transferred the right of manufacturing of test rigs (for characterizing filter media used for pollution control in industries) to Kanwal Enterprises, Gurgaon, Hr.). The development will help textile and environmental technologists, researchers, practicing engineers and technologists, industry personnel, and filter unit manufacturers and consultants involved in pollution control activities.
- Design and Development of Portable Pain Relieving Instrument: Musculoskeletal pain is one of the most common reasons for patients to contact health care professionals. At present, there is no single device with Low & Medium Frequency currents in a single unit. It is a safe and easy to use medium frequency device to be used at community level. All these features are not available in other devices, which are used in electrotherapy and the novelty has been patented.
Initiatives Towards Swachh Bharat
Waste Management Technologies (WMT) Programme
With the objective to contribute towards Swachch Bharat, a new programme viz. Waste Management Technologies (WMT) was initiated in October 2015 to come up with technological solutions for the problems faced by the country in solid waste management. Areas under this include hospital waste, plastic waste, e-waste, etc. 19 projects were initiated in the first phase and 18 projects in the second phase respectively. Department has recently invited the Expression of interest (EoI) for considering joint and scale up projects under Solid Waste Management. The overwhelming response of investigators was reflected in 780 EoIs received by the Department.
Landfill Reclamation: DST has constituted a scientific advisory committee on the request of Govt. of Delhi for the reclamation of sanitary landfill site. The committee recommended short term, medium term and long-term measure and action plan to the concerned municipal bodies. A comprehensive assessment of available technologies for the solid-waste management has also been done and shared with MoUD to aid in the future deployment of these technologies.
Mission Innovation (MI) Smart Grid Challenge
DST organized MI India Workshop on Smart Grid on 22nd May 2017 at IIT-Delhi to identify R&D themes relevant to challenge objectives. A Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) was announced in June 2017 earmarking US $ 5 million for collaborative projects with MI countries at MI Ministerial-2 in Beijing, China. 115 proposals were received out of which 28 were screened for next level. India conducted the second International Mission Innovation Smart Grids Workshop on 16-18 November 2017 at IIT Delhi. Delegates from India as well as 12 Mission Innovation Countries participated in the event along with the Industry. An Exhibition was also conducted on 18th November 2017 to showcase the work taken under by Government bodies as well as Industries. The outcome of the MI international workshop was:
- – Release a country report on MI Smart Grids activities, strategies and vision,
- – Launch of UI ASSIST India US Collaborative Programs
- – Identified R&D tasks to be launched by 2018.
SEGES PIs showcasing their Research at Second International Mission Innovation Smart Grids Workshop on 18 November 2017
India organised the first MI-India Workshop on “Off Grid Access to Electricity Innovation Challenge” on 23nd May, 2017 at IIT Delhi. Based on the R&D needs identified at the workshop, a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) was announced in June 2017 earmarking US $ 5 million for collaborative projects with MI countries at MI Ministerial-2 in Beijing, China. More than 80 proposals have been received and are in advance stage of evaluation. DST also participated in the International Workshop on theme to identify areas for collaboration. A synthesis document was also prepared detailing spectrum of activities, institutions and research priorities of participating countries.
First MI-India Workshop on “Clean Energy Materials Innovation Challenge” was organized on 17th August 2017 at TERI University, New Delhi in order to identify country’s research priorities in conformity to the goals of Innovation Challenge for Clean Energy and develop the country status report in this area.
Participants of Clean Energy Workshop at TERI New Delhi
The Department also participated in Mission Innovation’s (MI’s) Clean Energy Materials Innovation Challenge, an International Experts’ workshop at Mexico City in the month of September 2017. The aim of the workshop was to support the Innovation Challenge’s goal of accelerating the exploration, discovery and use of new, high-performance, low-cost clean energy materials by at least ten times.
Mission Innovation Challenge — Affordable Heating and Cooling of Buildings: DST with CEPT University and Alliance for Energy Efficiency Economy (AEEE) organised a workshop on Affordable Heating and Cooling of Buildings on Aug 1, 2017 in New Delhi. The objective of the workshop was to create awareness about Innovation Challenge # 7 and discusses India’s priorities in the area of “Affordable Heating and Cooling of Buildings” and Explore possibilities for India’s R&D initiatives. DST also participated in International Workshop at Abu Dhabi and made important contribution in all 6 thematic subareas including storage and physiological studies in which India is taking a lead.
Energy demand reduction in the Built Environment: A joint India & UK research programme to help reduce energy demand in UK & India’s built stock, both new major urban developments’ currently being planned and existing built stock has been initiated with a commitment of £3.8M with matching support from DST to support R&D projects in the area of Energy demand reduction in the Built Environment. A call was announced in January, 2017 on the initiative. Total 22 proposals have been received against Call and 4 proposals have been initiated.
Materials on Energy Storage (MES)
A new programme on the Materials on Energy Storage (MES) to support R&D activities aimed at innovative materials for energy storage, and to build energy storage device with enhanced output for multifunctional applications was launched during the year. Aiming at the efficient use and further increase of renewable energy and demonstrating its value in terms of flexibility in the energy systems are the prime objectives of the initiative.130 proposals were received and 18 were approved for funding with a total cost of Rs. 16 Cr.
The program focused to support Basic, Applied Research & Technology Development, seeks to improve the tools and methodologies needed to understand and predict the characteristics and performance of energy storage materials, components, devices and systems, under different conditions and at different length and time scales. 125 proposals were received and 33 were approved for funding in the year 2016-17.
Research stream classification of Materials for Energy Storage
Materials for Energy Conservation and Storage (MECSP)
A theme-based initiative to support research and development for entire spectrum of energy conservation and storage technologies from early stage research to technology breakthroughs in materials, systems and scalable technologies to maximize resource use efficiency was initiated in the year 2016-17. The is the objective of the initiative was to underpin recognized centres of energy materials research, to encourage those centres to link with new research groups working in complementary areas and to link centres into a coordinated national network and to create a strengthened energy materials research community that covers the full breadth of energy research areas that is strongly linked both nationally and internationally. A total of 52 proposals are under consideration for support.
Initiative to Promote Habitat Energy Efficiency (I-PHEE)
A new national programme on “Initiative to Promote Habitat Energy Efficiency (I-PHEE)” to improve energy performance of buildings and cities was launched. It would support enhancement of knowledge and practice to save energy in design, construction and operation of buildings. The initiative also geared to support enhancement of knowledge and practice to save energy in design, construction and operation of human habitats. The initiative also envisages support to India specific outcome based research in the areas of energy efficient building envelop technologies, low energy cooling systems, daylighting and electric lighting, building automation and controls for energy savings and research which can provide scientific weights to policy formulation and help devise procedures, codes and standards. 30 projects have been initiated.
Mission Programme on Methanol and Dimethyl Ether
The Methanol economy holds promise to help India to mitigate its petroleum import cost and at the same time counter the problems associated with global warming due to excess CO2 emission. An International Seminar on ‘India’s Leap to Methanol Economy— Opportunities and Options for Energy Security’ was held for knowledge sharing and aggregation for chalking out a strategy for preparing a road map on Methanol & DME economy for the country. DST actively contributed in preparation of roadmaps for Methanol DME and Dimethyl ether. A survey report on Production & Utilisation issues of Methanol & DME was finalized. DST initiated research programme on methanol and DME, which evinced great interest and 94 proposals were received out of which 9 have been supported.
DST-Intel Collaborative Research for Real-Time River Water and Air Quality Monitoring
The project has been initiated as a new joint programme at a cost of Rs. 33 cr on a 50:50 cost sharing basis in Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mode. The project will develop low cost compact smart sensors with on-board power and communication for real time analysis of water and air quality over large areas.
Improving Water Quality and Reusing waste water
Building upon the Thames-Ganga Partnership and recognizing the importance of clean and potable water, DST and Research Council of UK have also agreed to launch a new collaborative programme on ‘Improving Water Quality and Reusing waste water’. 8 projects focusing on Sensing, Treatment and fate of pollutants have been launched.
Advanced Ultra Super Critical (AUSC) Thermal Power Plant –R&D Phase:
A consortium of three government entities, namely Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL), Indira Gandhi Centre of Atomic Research (IGCAR) and National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) have formulated a R&D project for the development of AUSC technology for thermal power plants of the future, envisaging reduced coal consumption as well as carbon di-oxide (CO2) emission. The project has a time cycle of two and a half years, with an estimated cost of Rs.1554 crore, with a contribution of Rs.270 crore from BHEL, Rs.50 crore from NTPC, Rs.234 crore from IGCAR and Rs.100 crore from Department of Science and Technology (DST). Balance amount of Rs.900 crore will be contributed by Department of Heavy Industry (DHI) as grant. Accordingly, two proposals have been supported by DST to IGCAR, Kalpakkam- BHEL to develop advanced rotor testing facility and spin test rig for Dadri Plant using indigenous material.
Solar Energy Research Institute for India and the United States (SERIIUS):
The Solar Energy Research Institute for India and the United States (SERIIUS) is co-led by the Indian Institute of Science (IISc)-Bangalore and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). SERIIUS carries out fundamental and applied research, analysis and assessment, outreach and workforce development through specific bi-national projects in three Research Thrusts of Sustainable Photovoltaics (PV), Multiscale Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) and Solar Energy Integration (SEI). The facility was inaugurated by Science & Technology Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan at the IISc campus in Bengaluru on 22nd February, 2018. This is India’s first test-bed for next generation, efficient, compact, waterless super critical carbon dioxide Brayton cycle test loop for power generation. The technology is perhaps the first test loop coupled with solar heat source in the world.
Joint Virtual Centre for Clean Energy
India and UK together have set up virtual Joint Clean Energy Centre on Clean Energy focusing on integration of intermittent clean energy with storage for stable power supply at grid as well grid isolated communities at a total investment of £ 10 million. Two research proposals were supported. The two Indo-UK Joint Virtual Clean Energy Centres were launched at Second International Mission Innovation Smart Grids Workshop on 18 November 2017.
Expo 2017 “Future Energy”
DST showcased five working models on “Future Energy” in the India Pavilion at largest International event on clean energy during June 10th – September 10th, 2017 at Astana, Kazakhstan. It focused on development of renewable energy in India with focus on solar energy. DST demonstrated five working models and posters developed under the aegis of DST namely “Solar sea water desalination and thermal storage units, Shallow emitter silicon solar cell and modules process technology, Surya Jyoti – Micro Solar Dome, Hybrid Solar-Biomass Power Plant and Solar Inverter” exhibited in the India pavilion.
Collaboration on National Mission for Electric Mobility
The Department has formalized a collaboration with the Department of Heavy Industry (DHI) on working jointly for implementation of R&D component of DHI’s National Mission for Electric Mobility. A Joint Technology Platform for Electric Mobility (TPEM) has been set up in the Department of Science & Technology to implement the programme. The Call for Proposals in the priority area Ultra capacitor has already been made.
Programs fostering Innovations
National Initiative for Developing and Harnessing Innovations (NIDHI)
NIDHI is an umbrella programme initiated in 2016-17 by the Department. In line with the PM’s vision on Innovation and Start-up India, NIDHI programme aims to nurture knowledge-based and technology-driven innovative ideas into successful startups. NIDHI focuses on building a seamless and innovation driven entrepreneurial ecosystem. Different programmes have been designed and are being implemented to address the gaps in the ecosystem. The programs range from providing fellowships to the students opting for entrepreneurship, providing ‘Proof of Concept’ support for converting ideas into prototypes, providing business development support through accelerators, providing seed support to ventures and creating world class infrastructure for incubating startups through Technology Business Incubators and Centres of Excellence. The programme aims to provide technological solutions not only for the pressing needs of the society but also targets to create new avenues for wealth and job creation.
During last four years, 45 Technology Business Incubators (TBIs) have been established at various National Institutions of Importance, Public and Private institutions across the country. Establishment of a Research Park at IIT Gandhinagar has been supported at a cost of Rs. 90 crore. 10 TBIs supported with Prayasshalas and 30 TBIs supported with seed support to enable the start-ups to take their ventures to the next level.
India Innovation Initiative (I3)
I3 is a joint program of DST, Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) and the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), which aims to promote scientific thinking and problem solving amongst the youth. It encourages them to apply theories and methods of science to carve out high impact and disruptive solution to industry and social challenges. In I3 final event top innovators, identified through intensive scrutiny at regional workshops, participate and many of them win various awards & prizes sponsored by several partners & associates. Also, an enabling mechanism has been created for commercialising the best and home-grown initiatives through support mentorship, investors and industry connect.
International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) and IRIS:
Team India, comprising of 29 school students (Grade IX-XII), who were winners at the Innovation for Research and Initiative in Science (IRIS) National Fair 2016, represented India at the INTEL-ISEF held in Los Angeles, California, USA during 14-19 May 2017. The Indo US Science and Technology Forum (IUSSTF), in partnership with DST, facilitated the participants of the team. In addition to ISEF, they also visited Maker Fair in San Francisco.
Team India in ISEF 2017 has done the nation proud by winning a total of 21 awards — 10 Grand Awards and 11 Special Awards — at the ISEF 2017, the maximum by any of the 78 participating countries. In addition, 6 minor plants were named after these outstanding Indian students. ISEF 2017 provided a platform for Indian student to interact with their counterparts from across the globe.
IRIS is a public-private partnership between DST, Intel and IUSSTF to promote and nurture science and research amongst young Indian innovators. IRIS National Fair is conducted annually in India for school students, who compete in 17 subject categories. In 2017. the best projects participated in National IRIS Fair was held in New Delhi during 16-18 November 2017. Over 100 child scientists/ innovators participated in the Fair and presented their innovative research-based projects and 20 Outstanding projects were selected for National IRIS awards. They will form Team India and would compete in Intel-International Science & Engineering Fair to be held in USA in May 2018.
A collaborative Incubation Program for Hardware and Systems Startups by DST, Intel, and SINE-IIT Bombay has been successfully completed. This was a first of its kind programme to support hardware and systems-based startups in India. 15 Startup benefitted through this program.
DST-ABI-IUSSTF supported Women Entrepreneurship Quest (WEQ):
WEQ is a unique program designed to promote and showcase early-stage technology ventures which are founded or led by women entrepreneurs in all technologies. The program is one of its kind to be organized in the country for tapping talented women entrepreneurs in technology. The Partnership of DST and Indo-USSTF, a bi-national body of DST with AnitaB.org, a non- profit entity to promote women in technology and based at Silicon Valley was forged in the year 2014. The winners of WEQ, are awarded with fully paid, one-week exposure and experiential learning with prominent ecosystem players of Silicon Valley. The exposure has helped over 22 women entrepreneurs by connecting to better mentors, refining business preposition, market better leads/ traction and readiness for raising investments.
Women Accelerator programme “-empoWer”
DST has supported two Empower programs, which is the first accelerator program with components of strong mentoring and preparedness to fund raising, dedicated exclusively for women entrepreneurs. The 6 weeks program for accelerating 15 women entrepreneurs has been successfully conducted twice in FY 2016-17 and FY 17-18 by Zone Start-up in Bombay Stock Exchange. The Canadian Government awarded top 3 winners with a weeklong paid visit to Toronto Incubator.
DST-Lockheed Martin-Tata Trusts India Innovation Growth Programme 2.0:
The India Innovation Growth Programme 2.0 was launched on March 10th, 2017 at the Festival of Innovations at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. India Innovation Growth Program (IIGP) is a unique public private partnership initiated in 2007 between Government of India’s Department of Science and Technology and Lockheed Martin Corporation and Tata Trusts. The program offers an excellent platform to nurture young innovators into entrepreneurs and convert innovative ideas into successful businesses. The top 10 awardees of the Open Innovation Challenge are awarded with cash support and are given global exposure of MIT, Boston, USA ecosystem through experiential learning visit.
DST-Texas Instruments “India Innovation Challenge 2016”:
DST has partnered with the Texas Instruments in the year 2016 to scout, motivate, validate and incubate engineering students driven innovative design ideas with commercial potential under Make in India, anchored by the MyGov platform and implemented through Indian institute of Management, Bangalore. It offers field testing and, seed investment and incubation support through NSRCEL, IIM Bangalore to top 10 winners selected from over 5000 proposals received from 956 engineering colleges.
Power of Ideas:
The Economic Times Power of Ideas is a largest entrepreneurship development initiative jointly organized by The Economic Times in association with the Department of Science and Technology, and Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE), the business incubator at Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, to seek, reward, nurture and groom business ideas by connecting them with relevant evaluators, mentors and investors. The program has been successfully conducted in the year 2015 and 2017, which attracted over 15,000 ideas. The program offers excellent on campus mentoring at IIM Bangalore and investment support to top 20 apart from awarding top 20 winners through a cash prize.
India- Rwanda Innovation Growth Program:
The program aims to strengthen the bilateral relationship based on Science, Technology and Innovation between India and African Countries. Technologies and innovations in IRGP focuses on include Agriculture, Food Processing, Energy, Waste Management, Education, Information Technology, Healthcare, Disaster Risk Reduction, etc. Technologies and innovations with social impact and ensuring last mile delivery will be given preference to reach bottom of pyramid population.
Science & Technology of Yoga and Meditation (SATYAM)
Responding to the clarion call made by Hon’ble Prime Minister on Int’l Yoga Day, a new initiative namely ‘SATYAM’ was launched by DST under its Cognitive Science Research Initiative (CSRI) in the year 2015-16 to rejuvenate deeper scientific research in yoga and meditation. Against three Calls for Proposals since 2015, 60 strong projects out of over 1050 proposals received have been recommended for budgetary support under SATYAM. These projects address issues related to study of several practices of Yoga & Meditation to treat various diseases like Schizophrenia, Epilepsy, Depression, Early Dementia, Mild Cognitive Disorder (MCI), Parkinson’s Disease, Cerebral Palsy, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Type 2 diabetes, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), Pulmonary function in chest trauma patients, life style diseases, etc. and also on improvement of quality-of-life. The selected teams involve clinicians, proponents of Yoga and scientists, among other from multi-disciplinary areas.
A new Mobile App ‘Celebrating Yoga’ was developed and launched on the occasion of International Yoga Day (21 June 2017) by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Hon’ble Minister of S&T and ES. This App developed at Vigyan Prasar, Delhi is populated with short films on various Yoga postures & techniques with a brief on their application & utility for people’s well-being.
North Eastern Centre for Ethno Medical Research
A unique Ethno Medicinal Research Centre (EMRC) in the remote region of Manipur has been established with budgetary support of approx. Rs. 6.00 crores by DST in 2017. This Centre aims to undertake ethno phyto-chemical research of wild herbs available in the NE region that have unique medicinal and aromatic properties, particularly in our traditional systems. This one-of-its-kind initiative will not only provide scientific validation of traditional herbs but aims to improve quality of life and economic status of the local community through product development and better livelihood.
Technology Interventions for Disabled and Elderly (TIDE)
TIDE is a one-of-its-kind initiative of SEED Division of DST aimed at promoting basic research, development and adaptation of technology for improving quality-of-life of the elderly population and disabled people (Divyangjan) in the country. This initiative complements the Accessible India Campaign (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan) of the Government of India. Under the programme, many technology prototypes and products are developed for the elderly and persons with disabilities (PwDs). These products help them gain access to equal opportunity, live independently and participate in all aspects of life in an inclusive society. Through the budgetary support extended under TIDE, many academic institutes, R&D labs, and non-government organisations are working in this domain. DST has also instituted an award for the development of the best-assisted device, and the Hon’ble Prime Minister gave the inaugural award during the 103rd Indian Science Congress.
Hemoglobin (Hb) Calculator
An android-based smartphone app called Hemoglobin (Hb) Calculator for accurate and sensitive measurement of Hb has been developed. Its higher sensitivity, specificity, accuracy and reliability make it an attractive alternative for Hb estimation in resource-limiting conditions.
- Sulphur dioxide Vapour Detection Sensor
Institute of Advanced Study in Science & Technology ( IASST), Guwahati has developed an efficient Sulphur dioxide Vapour Detection Sensor using PVF Composite: The composite PVFCOU was found to exhibit a response time of 3 s for 400 ppt SO2 and a LOD of 1.15 ppb SO2 at ambient condition.
Providing Clean Water
- Water Technology Initiative aims to promote R&D activities aimed at providing safe drinking water at affordable cost and in adequate quantity using appropriate S&T interventions evolved through indigenous efforts. During 2014-18, a total of 174 R&D Projects addressing 20 site specific challenges covering around 400 habitats across 23 states were supported.
- – Integrated Water Management intervention in drought effected regions of Marathwada: DST has supported quick deployment and demonstration of a mobile water purification unit developed by CSIR-CSMCRI for producing potable water for drinking. It was demonstrated in Latur, Marathwada region which was facing severe scarcity of drinking water during year 2016 drought period. Based on these intervention, an integrated waste water management system has been developed in Ausa district, in Marthwada Region.
- – Dielectric Barrier Discharge (DBD) based plasma system for portable water purification: A technology developed at CEERI Pilani through support by DST’s Water Technology Initiative (WTI) for Dielectric Barrier Discharge (DBD) based plasma system for disinfection has been successfully transferred for commercialization to Turners Pvt. Ltd. Jaipur.
- – Deployment of cost effective biosand filter technology for promoting community health by addressing incidence of waterborne diseases in select villages of Bihar: Innovative Bio-sand (JalKalp) water filter technology is being promoted to address arsenic, iron and pathogens in water as an innovative and cost effective alternative. 204 villages have been approached for sensitization and awareness building. Sensitization and awareness building is being carried out through small meetings with village communities. So far 337 meetings involving 5438 males and 4879 females carried out. Sensitization and awareness building is also being carried out in village schools for children. So far 37 sessions in different schools were carried out involving students of class 5th and above. 688 households adopted the JalKalp water filters and are satisfied with the performance of filter and the quality of filtered water. A safe water storage container has also been designed, produced and distributed to filter users.
- – Establishment of a Water Quality Laboratory in Kohima, Nagaland: The Water Quality Laboratory was recently inaugurated by the Hon’ble Union Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Harsh Vardhan at NASTEC, Kohima, Nagaland, which has been established by the support of DST under WTI. The Referral Water Laboratory is fully equipped with the in house sophisticated analytical equipments for water quality analysis which is a one of its kind facility that can cater to the need for water analytical services in Nagaland and adjoining states.
- Setting up of a Facility for Drinking Water quality analysis and monitoring in North Coastal districts of Andhra Pradesh: A continuous water quality analysis and monitoring facility has been established at GITAM University, Vizag, Andhra Pradesh especially for rural and tribal population. The facility is creating awareness about drinking water quality deviations in the area and providing a source of equipped water quality analytical facility
S&T for Society
Sustainable Rural Micro-Industry Model at Malunga Village, Jodhpur
For inclusive development of the country, sustainable industrial activities using local resources in the rural areas are extremely important. DST has been paying adequate attention to benefitting the rural population through the application of Science and Technology. One such initiative of the Department has culminated into the establishment of a Rural-Industry Complex in a plot of wasteland at Malunga village in Jodhpur district of Rajasthan during 2015-16. Integration of technology in this industry complex has been done in such a manner that it satisfies the local needs by utilization of local resources. It offers sustainable and inclusive development by converting waste to wealth by an efficient poly-generation technology. Technology deployment is environment friendly and fulfills the objectives of Swachh Bharat, Swastha Bharat and Samarth Bharat.
Surya Jyoti for lighting up homes of poor and off-grid dwellings
Some 1 crore dwellings in India are estimated to be off-grid or under severe brown-out. In order to capture day light and concentrate the same inside the dark rooms, a low cast device named Surya Jyoti has been developed and tested with the support of a project from Department of Science & Technology during 2015-16.
Surya Jyoti is a unique solar energy operated lighting device, which works during daytime in passive mode and in the night time through photovoltaic mode. The integrated PV module fitted in the dome charges a special battery during day time which in turn provides light during night. About 4000 Micro Solar domes are now working in the slums of Delhi, Kolkata, Agartala, Guwahati, Bhopal and Bengaluru. However, demand of the product is increasing manifold as more and more people are becoming aware of the unique benefits of using the product.
- – During 2014-18, about 240 projects were supported under Long-Term Core Support for Technological Advancement for Rural Areas (TARA; Scheme for Young Scientist & Technologists (SYST); and Technology Interventions for Addressing Societal Needs (TIASN) which encompasses Technology Interventions for Disabled and Elderly (TIDE), programs for Cold Desert Region (CODER) & Arid & Semi-Arid Region (ASAR) besides Sustainable Agriculture Rural Transformation Holistic Initiative (SARTHI) and Technology Intervention for Mountain Eco-system (TIME).
- – Pt. Deen Dayal Vigyan Gram Sankul Pariyojana (PDDUVGSP), a novel initiative of, was conceptualised to usher in holistic & sustainable development. Four districts of Uttarakhand were identified to start with, and appropriate S&T interventions targeting natural resources, skills, traditional crafts, etc. to enhance quality-of-life of people in clusters of adjacent villages were provided. Hon’ble Minister of S&T and ES along with Hon’ble Chief Minister of Uttarakhand launched it from Dehradun in December 2017. These clusters were selected for support through deliberations held among stakeholders. Needs and challenges across the clusters were identified through field visits and intensive as well as extensive interaction with targeted beneficiaries. Area of interventions would be processing and value addition of milk, honey, mushroom, herbal tea, forest produce, native crops, medicinal & aromatic plants and strengthening traditional crafts, handloom, etc. Post-harvest processing of kiwi, strawberry, cherry, tulsi, adrak, badi elaichi through solar drying technology, extraction of apricot oil using cold press technology would also be undertaken for enhancing their shelf life and for gainful benefits for the Farmer Producer Groups/Self Help Groups (SHGs).
- – 25 S&T driven organisations are supported under Technology Advancement for Rural Areas (TARA) , which focus on technology development/adaptation and delivery on specific challenges in the identified region. A Compendium of Technologies brought out in 2017, which gives an overview of over 100 S&T interventions developed so far. Community trained & empowered in use of such S&T packages. Also, after a gap of a decade, five new S&T driven organisations are being inducted under TARA to expand its presence in hitherto unexplored areas. Also, several novel and adaptive technologies were developed and deployed.
- – Technology Interventions for Addressing Societal Needs (TIASN): 37 projects were supported during last four years through location-specific methodology in Cold Desert Region (CODER) & Arid & Semi-Arid Region (ASAR) and Shivalik foothills under Sustainable Agriculture Rural Transformation Holistic Initiative (SARTHI). A few shining examples are:
- – A prototype for manual load carrier-head harness developed and its field trials conducted for farmers and laborers to reduce the stress induced on the spinal cord due to lifting of heavy weights
- – Technological intervention and communication package developed for management and care of juvenile diabetes
- Green & Blue water harvesting techniques demonstrated in tribal districts of Panchmahal and Dahod in Gujarat
- Thornless seabuck thorn varieties introduced in Lahaul, Himachal Pradesh, to reduce drudgery of farmers.
- – Under SARTHI program, women Self Help Group (SHG) Sandhya is preparing rose sherbat using fresh rose petals of desi rose in clean, hygienic and scientific manner in Mali village of Kandi region, facilitated by Punjab Agriculture University, Ludhiana. The organic cultivation of rose and its processing was promoted in scientific manner in this area for the first time as it clears toxins, prevents loss of heat, gives cooling effect and is a source of instant energy. Sandhya sold 7000 bottles of Rose sherbat in 2017-18, a 25 times enhancement since 2014. Sales of other products (Gulkand, mix vegetable pickle, black carrot kanji, tomato sauce, ketchup) by the SHG too enhanced by 10 times. Four more SHGs were registered in the area for promoting similar activities and livelihood creation.
- – An improvised drying-cum-storage technology for large cardamom has been successfully introduced and demonstrated in Ziro, Arunachal Pradesh. Flue pipe system dryer provides good colour to the capsules and perfect drying in short span of time. Now, Cardamom farmers of Ziro are getting better economic returns as compared to traditional system.
- – Sizable part of allocations made under Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (SCSP) and Tribal Sub Plan (TSP) are used for societal programmes. Under both these sub plans, 85 diverse projects were implemented in different parts of the country focusing on appropriate and cost-effective technology modulation and transfer, based on location-specific needs/conditions, leading to technological empowerment in related occupations of SC and ST sections of society. Due emphasis has been laid on creating sustainable livelihoods through use of locally-available resources & materials.
- The Network Program called “People and Protected Areas (PPA): Conservation and Sustainable Livelihoods in Partnership with Local Communities” is a multi-locational network program implemented as joint initiative of SEED, DST and WWF-India. It aims to coordinate and support the efforts of local and grassroots NGOs to enhance quality-of-life for communities living in & around PAs. Under the 2nd Phase (2014-2017), 15 NGOs were involved to work around 16PAs for addressing conservation and livelihood issues through S&T interventions. The program has covered over 4000 households of 20 tribal groups including PTGs in 75 villages with technical back-stopping from nearby S&T institutions and Core Support Groups (CSGs) of SEED. For example, in Parambikulam project area, about 45% increase in income level was reported though organized production and sale of value-added products (jack fruits, honey, manjakoova, NTFPs) by women’s group.
- – Another Network program for North-Western Himalaya “Technology Interventions for Mountain Ecosystem-Livelihood Enhancement through Action research & Networking (TIME-LEARN)” was initiated in 2017. Under this program, 19 action research projects are being supported for S&T interventions to address local issues by engaging communities in horticulture, livestock management, post-harvest technology, utilization of local bio-resources to develop bio-pesticides, addressing human-wildlife conflict, food and nutrition, conventional ropeway, and construction technologies for multi-hazard resistant housing in mountain areas.
Nakshe portal launched by Survey of India
A new web-portal called “Nakshe” was launched by the Honb’le Union Minister, Ministry of Science & Technology, Dr. Harsh Vardhan on the occasion of 250th anniversary of Survey of India. This web application has been developed by Survey of India with Aadhar enabled user authentication for providing access to the citizens of India. Survey of India made available all the 1:50,000 scale topographical Open Series Maps (OSMs) in PDF format for free download from this web-portal.
Braille Mapping and Atlas compilation
Initiated by NATMO, the program has been greatly appreciated and recognized by Government of India and it received the National Award for S&T Intervention in Empowering the Physically Challenged. The first atlas in Braille was released on the 13th of January 2018. The Department of Science and Technology is now working towards making the atlas accessible to all by bringing its cost down to Rs. 600 per atlas.
Mega Science Projects
Experimental stations at Trieste, Italy inaugurated
As part of the India-Italy scientific and technological cooperation, two new experimental stations were set up at the Elettra Synchrotron Trieste Research Center, Trieste, Italy. Named Xpress and XRD2, the two beamlines were co-funded by the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India, through Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, and Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Collaboration (MAECI), Italy.
A delegation of DST, led by the Secretary Ashutosh Sharma, and a MAECI delegation, led by the Plenipotentiary Minister Fabrizio Nicoletti, Head of the Scientific and Technological Cooperation Unit, inaugurated the two beamlines in April 2017. The Xpress beamline uses X-ray diffraction technology to study the structure of materials under extremely high pressure, including the synthesis of new compounds, such as ceramics or alloys, mineralogy, geophysics and the study of the properties of materials. The XRD2 beamline has been designed to determine the 3D structure of proteins and biological macromolecules and its applications span the fields of biology, medicine, pharmacology and biotechnology. The two new beamlines will be available to the Indian, Italian and international researchers, according to the scientific quality of the research projects and their impact, assessed by a peer-review system.
Inauguration of beam-lines ‘XRD2’ and ‘XPRESS’ at the Synchrotron facility in Trieste, Italy
Thirty Meter Telescope
India’s participation in the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) project was approved by the NDA Government at a total cost of Rs. 1299.8 crores in September 2014, under the joint responsibility of Department of Science and Technology and Department of Atomic Energy. The Department of Science and Technology on behalf of the Government of India executed the TMT international Observatory partnership documents becoming a full member in the project on 2nd December 2014. The other countries participating in the project are US, Canada, China and Japan. India will contribute towards the construction phase both in cash and kind. The Indian science sector will benefit both scientifically and technologically from participation in this project. On the technology front, design, prototyping, testing, validation and manufacturing of various in-kind items will bring in know-how for new and cutting-edge technologies. These will have long term spin-off advantages for the country. On the scientific front, after commissioning of TMT in 2022-23, India will get 25-30 assured observational nights on the TMT. This will enable Indian astronomers to study front-ranking scientific problems such as formation and evolution of stars, planets and galaxies.
Devasthal Optical Telescope
A state-of-the-art world class 3.6-meter Devasthal Optical Telescope was remotely activated jointly by the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India and Prime Minister of Belgium on 30th March 2016. The telescope is installed at Devasthal near Nainital. It is the largest steerable imaging telescope in Asia which is a result of scientific collaboration between the teams of scientists from Aryabhatt Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES), Nainital, an autonomous institution of DST, and Belgian scientists. The telescope will contribute to observations for frontline scientific research in astronomy and astrophysics.
International S&T Collaborations
India-Canada Technology Summit
The DST–CII India-Canada Technology Summit was held on the 14th and 15th of November 2017. It is aimed to provide a high profile and wide-ranging platform to industries, institutions and government agencies from India and Canada, to forge knowledge-business partnerships to boost investments and trade. The focus areas of the summit were Smart Ideas, Defence and Aerospace, Smart Machines, Smart Transport, Smart Women, Smart People, Clean Energy and Smart Care.
Global Research Council Meeting
SERB jointly hosted the Fifth Annual Meeting of Global Research Council (GRC)-2016 from 25th to 27th of May 2016 with the Research Councils UK (RCUK). The Global Research Council (GRC) is a virtual organization comprising of the Heads of Research Councils from around the world, dedicated to promoting the sharing of data and best practice for high-quality collaboration among research funding agencies globally. Heads of Research Councils from 44 countries were among more than 100 delegates who attended the event to share the best practices and discuss policy issues in the field of Research Funding. A Statement on ‘Principles of Interdisciplinarity’ and ‘Actions towards Equality and Status of Women in Research’ was discussed and endorsed by participants representing the global research community.
Joint Clean Energy Research and Development Centre on Smart Grids and Energy Storage
India and the United States expanded collaboration under Partnership to Advance Clean Energy- Research (PACE-R) to include smart grid and grid storage critical importance of expanding clean energy research, development, manufacturing, and deployment, which increases energy access and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. A Funding Opportunity Announcement (FoA) was made in July 2016 to support multi-institutional network projects using public-private partnership model of funding. Award will be made to a consortium with the knowledge and experience to undertake high-quality collaborative research programs. 7 applications have been jointly submitted by the US and Indian researchers who would be members of the Consortia based on their mutual interests, priorities and strengths.
MoUs signed during the India-Africa Forum Summit
Under the India-Africa Forum Summit, DST in partnership with MEA is implementing the CV Raman Fellowships which enables researchers from African nations to undertake research in Indian R&D and academic institutions under a fully paid fellowship. This has established the S&T footprint of India across 38 African nations. From 2017 the number of fellowships was enhanced from 100 to 200 every year. Capacity building and training through twinning model have been extended to Benin, Ethiopia and Tunisia. Under the Africa initiative Technology Transfer programs with Ethiopia, Rwanda and S. Africa have been launched.
Indo-German bilateral projects
Considering the relevance of ‘Digital economy and society’, DST and Max Plank agreed to support the new Phase of the Indo-German Centre on Computer Sciences. The new phase of the Indo German Centre for Sustainability will undertake research on impacts of climate change on the coastal infrastructure and the adaptation strategies. The funding to the bilateral Indo German Science and Technology Centre (IGSTC) was doubled from 2 m to 4 m euro from each side to further strengthen industrial R&D cooperation (academia+industry), focussed on advanced manufacturing, energy technologies, bio-medical devises, ICT etc. A India centric beamline was also launched at the synchrotron facility at DESY, Hamburg, Germany.
Hon’ble Minister for S&T and ES inaugurating the India centric beam-line at PETRA III, DESY in Hamburg, Germany in September 2016
India-Japan Joint Research Laboratory Programme
Relationship with Japan was substantially strengthened by establishing Indo-Japan Joint laboratories in Internet-of-things, Big data analysis, and Artificial intelligence. The Phase II of the Indian Beamline at the synchrotron facility at KEK in Tsukuba, Japan was launched in Nov 2016 for conducting studies on nano-material characterization for energy storage and generation.
IC-IMPACTS Program with Canada
An innovative model of R&D cooperation through India-Canada Centre for Innovative Multidisciplinary Partnership to Accelerate Community Transformation and Sustainability (IC-IMPACTS) programme supported to promote research partnerships aimed at social transformation by providing solutions through application of science and technology in identified areas of safe and sustainable civil infrastructure and integrated water management.
India-Australia Strategic Research Fund (AISRF)
New projects in the areas covering advanced manufacturing; smart cities & infrastructure technologies; lifestyle & emerging disease control; and Bio-Medical technologies will be launched with Australia under the India-Australia Strategic Research Fund (AISRF). The program, which is in its 10th year, has announced 10 projects selected for funding on 10 April 2017. Launched Phase II of the Australia-India Strategic Research Fund (AISRF) for providing technological solutions to grand challenges in areas of human health science and agriculture biotechnology.
BRICS Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation
BRICS countries signed an MoU on Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation in March 2015 to promote research and innovation with the broad objectives of addressing global and regional socio-economic challenges, utilizing shared experiences and complementarities in STI and to co-generate new knowledge, innovative products, services and process in BRICS member countries supported by appropriate funding and investment instruments.
Arrangement of BRICS STI Framework Programme and the Implementation Plan:
Eight funding agencies from BRICS countries signed an “Arrangement of BRICS STI Framework Programme” and the “Implementation Plan” and agreed to co-invest together US$10 million to support multidisciplinary R&D projects under BRICS STI. Pursuant to this, 26 BRICS R&D projects were supported, and India is a partner for 22 projects. The 2nd call was announced in 2017 and 291 eligible proposals were received.
BRICS Young Scientist Forum
The BRICS Young Scientist Forum/Conclave, coordinated by India, is becoming an effective platform for networking of young creative talent. More than 50 young scientists from BRICS countries participated in these conclaves covering the areas of Biotechnology, Renewable Energy and nanotechnology and materials. India hosted the 1st conclave and deputed a team of 25 young Indian scientist in the 2nd BRICS Young Scientists Conclave held at Hangzhou, China during 11-15 July 2017. These young researchers got a unique opportunity to discuss pressing problems of the society such as affordable energy solutions, affordable health etc. and their solutions through scientific exploration and technological innovations. Two editions of BRICS Young Scientist Conclaves have been organized.
BRICS Science, Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (BRICS-STIEP)
The Action Plan for BRICS Innovation Cooperation (2017-2020) was prepared in India’s leadership, which was endorsed by 5th BRICS Science and Technology Ministerial Meeting in China on 18th July 2017 and finally signed on 5th September 2017 at the IX BRICS Summit in Xiamen, China. The plan has initial focus on creation of networks of science parks, technology business incubators and SMEs, and to create talent pools for converting ideas into solutions to address societal challenges. The Department of Science and Technology, Government of India from India, and the counterpart Ministries/Departments from other BRICS countries shall be the implementing agencies of the plan.
ASEAN-Indian Science and Technology Development Fund (AISTDF)
The ASEAN-Indian Science and Technology Development Fund (AISTDF), with an equivalent amount of 5 million USD, has been created to support collaborative R&D projects, research & training fellowships and ASEAN-India Innovation Platform which includes social innovation, research innovation and product innovation. The call for proposals under R&D collaborative projects and research training fellowships have been launched. Ten R&D projects in the areas of Material Science, Biofuels, Chemical Engineering, Biotechnology and Electronics and IT have already been sanctioned for a period of 3 years. The ASEAN-India Innovation Platform concept document has also been finalized and the activities under Innovation Platform are being launched soon.
India-EU Cooperation in research and Innovation
The India-European Union(EU) Science and Technology Agreement was renewed in 2015 for another five years. In the last four years 17 multi-countries projects were supported in the areas of New Energy Materials and Smart Grid, Diagnostic for Chronic Non-Communicable Diseases, Bio-economy and Waste to Energy.
India-EU Collaboration in Water: India and European Union has agreed to collaborate in the water sector. This decision was taken during the 11th India-EU Joint Steering Committee meeting held in Brussels on 6th June 2017. Pursuant to this decision, a joint India-EU Water Call was launched on November 7, 2017 seeking joint research proposals focused on wastewater treatment technology including bioremediation, drinking water purification and real time water quality monitoring. Both sides together will co-invest €30 million to address these water challenges faced by India.
DST- ICTP Cooperation for ICTP Ramanujan Prize in Mathematics
The ‘Ramanujan Prize’, named after the illustrious mathematician from India, for outstanding contributions by young mathematicians from developing countries is being awarded annually since 2005. As per the MoU between ICTP and IMU, DST agreed to fund the annual ‘Ramanujan Prize for Young Mathematicians from Developing Countries’ for a period of five years, from the year 2014. Dr. Amalendu Krishna, mathematician from the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai, India, was awarded the ‘2015 Ramanujan Prize’ in recognition of ‘his outstanding contributions in the area of algebraic K-theory, algebraic cycles and the theory of motives.’ The award carries a citation and a prize money of USD 15,000/-.
Newton Bhabha Fund
The Newton Bhabha Fund aims to bring together the UK and Indian scientific research and innovation sectors to find joint solutions to the challenges facing India in economic development and social welfare. The scheme is part of the UK’s £375 million Newton Fund to support science and innovation partnerships between the UK and emerging powers. Under the Newton Bhabha programme between DST and the Research Council, UK the neutron and muon source facility at the Rutherford Appleton Lab in Oxfordshire, UK will be accessible to Indian researchers. This will enable Indian scientists to work in the frontier areas of nano-science and technology by access to the portfolio of high-end instruments.
MoU on Indo-UK Newton-Bhabha Program
Indo-US Fulbright-Kalam Fellowships in Climate Change
In pursuance of the Joint Statement of the Government of USA and the Government of India the Fulbright-Kalam Climate Fellowship has been launched. The United States-India Educational Foundation (USIEF) has been given the responsibility to administer the Fulbright-Kalam Climate Fellowship on behalf of both the governments. The first batch of six fellows has been selected.
Program with CNRS
Initiated cooperative program with the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) of France to further accelerate scientific cooperation in frontier areas of mutual interest through thematic networked Centres.
A new chapter of cooperation with Italy was enabled through the Industrial R&D program focused on industry led research which would enable development of new process or products in sectoral areas covering Advanced Materials, Smart Manufacturing, Technologies for Cultural Heritage and Water technologies. Two new Indian beamlines were also established at the synchrotron facility at Elettra and access to more than 150 Indian researchers to this facility was also provided.
India and Israel agreed to significantly step up scientific and technological collaboration through the establishment of India-Israel Industrial R&D and Technological Innovation Fund (I4F), of US $40 million. The joint Fund is aimed to facilitate and support industrial R&D projects leading to co-development and commercialization of innovative technologies benefiting both countries in sectors covering Agriculture, Energy, ICT, Health and Water challenges.
The R&D collaboration between India and Portugal will be significantly strengthened with the announcement of a 4 million Euro fund to support collaborative activities in marine science & technology, new materials research and tissue engineering.
Launched a new programme with Russian Ministry of Education and Sciences (RMES) to support joint research projects in the areas of Applied Sciences. DST and the Foundation for Assistance to Small Innovative Enterprise (FASIE) of the Russian Federation concluded a new MoU to further the objectives of supporting enterprises in both countries for technology development through industrial research and innovation.
India-South Africa Partnership
A novel program on grass-root innovation was launched with South Africa for sharing of open source technologies and IP protection of traditional knowledge systems. This program is designed for co-development of products, validation through deployment and market ready technology transfer to meet the unmet needs of common people. A multi-institutional project on HIV Vaccine Research has been also initiated to develop preventive HIV vaccine that will also lead to identification of biomarkers and development of novel techniques for diagnosis and management of tuberculosis.
India-South Korea Partnership
With South Korea virtual networked R&D Centres on ‘Robotics’ and ‘Computational Materials’ have been established. These Centres are aimed to leverage complimentary R&D strengths of both countries through convergence of competencies in design, simulation and development of advanced manufacturing techniques.
To enhance the cooperation with USA under the Partnership to Advance Clean Energy Research (PACE-R) a new priority R&D area on Smart Grids and Energy Storage was supported through joint consortia-based project support. India also became a partner in the LIGO project for gravitational wave detection with agreement to set-up the detector station in India.
Partnership with neighbouring countries
India Science and Research Fellowship were extended for seven neighbouring country scientists for undertaking research work in India. These include fellowships for Afghanistan, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal and Sri Lanka. S&T Ministers Conclave was also organised as a part of the 2017- India International Science Festival held in Chennai. Ministers from Afghanistan and Bangladesh participated in the event. On the occasion, Hon’ble Minister announced 200 travel slots for researchers and scientists to avail various training opportunities in India
Partnership with the Industry
Towards ensuring that R&D output is translated beyond the realms of laboratories with tangible outcome through creation of new IP, processes, prototype and products bilateral Industrial R&D program on Applied R&D and Innovation have been pursued with chosen partner countries like Israel, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, South Korea, Spain, UK and USA. These programs are based on a PPP model of funding and are being implemented through the Global Innovation Technology Alliance (GITA) platform, except those with France, Germany and USA, the latter being implemented through the respective bilateral bodies. These projects directly feed to some of the national initiatives on Clean & Green India, Digital India, Make in India, Start-up India and Smart Cities. Forty innovative projects were approved for implementation with various partnering countries and about 12 products have been commercialized in collaboration with USA.
Major Events and Outreach Activities
Centenary celebrations of Bose Institute
Bose Institute has served the nation through its high-quality research in various branches of science and by developing highly competent scientific manpower. Among major contributions made by Bose Institute the most noteworthy are the pioneering of cosmic ray and nuclear physics research in India by Prof. D. M. Bose, and, the unravelling of the mechanism of action of cholera toxin by Dr. S. N. De. Over the years, the scientists of Bose Institute have made significant research contributions spanning the areas of plant genetics, structural and computational biology, molecular medicine, microbiology, systems biology, astroparticle and quantum physics as well as environmental sciences. Besides, Bose Institute undertakes extensive social outreach program in rural biotechnology and organising science camps for school children and teachers. In addition, Bose Institute contributes to human resource development by running an integrated MSc-PhD program.
The year 2017 saw the institute celebrate its centenary year marked by various national and international conferences, symposiums, workshops, lectures and training programs. The Institute organised a two-day seminar on History of Indian Science on 24 and 25 November 2017, followed DM Bose Memorial Lecture by Prof. R. Ramaswamy from JNU. On 27 and 28 of November, the institute organized a meeting on ‘Future of Science’.
Inauguration of SN Bose Institute’s new campus at Salt Lake, Kolkata
As the institute celebrated its centenary in 2017, it embarked on a new journey in its new campus in Kolkata. The new campus was inaugurated on the 29th of June 2017 by the then Hon’ble President Shri. Pranab Mukherjee. Built at a cost of Rs. 250 crore, the integrated campus facilitates seamless research across disciplines and is bigger by about 2.5 times the former campuses.
Launch of the India S&T Portal
India S&T Portal was launched with the objective to provide one stop information centre to school students, scientists and the common people on various schemes and programmes/ activities and major achievements in Science and Technology. The portal is a part of the larger, National Government Services Portal (NGSP), which provides a single window access to the various services provided by the various Indian Government entities. The India S&T portal provides detailed information pertaining to scientific education and scientific research & development, including details of policies, schemes, documents and programmes for scientists, researchers, scholars, students, etc. Various documents and reports published, like E-books and citizen charters, application forms, science and technology related schemes, like the Digital Literacy Mission and Multiplier Grants Scheme, as well as open data from national databases, such as the District Rainfall Normal, Expenditure on Research and Development can all be accessed from a single window on the S&T Portal.
Science Express – Climate Action Special
Science Express (SE), the most popular, mega outreach and flagship programs of NCSTC, is an innovative mobile science exhibition mounted on a specially designed 16 coach AC train, which has been traveling across India since October 2007. It has completed 9 tours of the country, covering 1,61,000 km and exhibiting at 529 locations spread across the length & breadth of country. It reached out directly to over 18.1 million visitors and thus become the largest, the longest running and the most visited mobile science exhibition. It has 12 entries in the Limca Book of Records including 6 new ones in the 2017 edition.
Science Express, (Phase I-IV) showcased cutting-edge research in S&T being carried out worldwide in collaboration with Max Planck Society and Federal Republic of Germany, later as ‘Science Express Biodiversity Special (SEBS)’ (Phase V-VII) it displayed rich biodiversity of India and its conservation measures with Ministry of Environment and Forest as partner. Phase VIII and IX of SE were titled ‘Climate Action Special (SECAS)’ which highlighted the global challenges of climate change. At each halt, activities were planned to engage visitors across different age groups to reinforce its message. An exciting Outreach Programme was also conducted in local schools along with engaging activities on the railway platforms. In addition, informative take-away material was made available for distribution amongst schools and colleges. DST entrusted Vikram A Sarabhai Community Science Centre (VASCSC), Ahmedabad, with the task of managing SE program since inception. It’s team of qualified, trained and motivated Science Communicators travelled with the train, facilitating the visitors, explaining and interpreting the exhibits, answering queries, and conducting its complementary activities. More information is available on website www.sciencexpress.in.
Science Express (SE) Milestones (30 October 2007- 08 September 2017)
- – Total Visitors ~ 1.81 crore
- – Number of Schools/Colleges that visited SE ~ 45,052
- – Number of Students who visited SE ~ 40.67 lakh
- – Number of Teachers who visited SE ~ 2.2 lakh
- – Number of General Visitors including children ~ 1.21crore
- – Students participating in on board JOS Lab ~ 4.9 lakh and Kids Zone ~ 2.5 lakh
- – Students participating in Platform Activity ~ 7.4 lakh and Outreach Activity ~ 1.7 lakh
- – Number of participants in on-board Teachers Orientation Program ~ 9,500
- – Distance travelled ~1.60 lakh kilometers
- – Total number of Halts ~ 529
- – Number of exhibition days ~ 1,812
- – Entries in Limca Book of records ~ 12
- – Over 270 trained Science Communicators
- – Extensive Media Coverage
India International Science Festival (IISF 2015)
IISF (2015) was organized in IIT, Delhi during 4th Dec. to 8th December 2015 with the objective of exposing the fruits of Science & Technology to the masses; building strategy to instill scientific temper among the masses; showcasing Indian contributions in the field of S&T over the years; providing platform to young scientists for exchange of knowledge and ideas; and supporting flagship programmes like Make in India, Digital India, Start-ups, Smart Villages, Smart Cities, etc. Approximately 10,000 delegates from all over the country participated in the following components of the festival – young scientists conference, techno-industrial expo, science film festival, national level exhibition and project competition showcasing innovative models under INSPIRE programme of Department of Science & Technology, industry academia conclave, largest practical science laboratory demo, and interactive workshops and informative sessions. Largest Practical Science Session with 2000 students, on 7th December 2015, working in small teams to complete experiments as part of the lesson that focused on catalysts has found entry in the Guinness Book of World Records.
S&T Communication through Community
Realizing the reach of community radio to communities, which do not have formal or easy access to verifiable information & knowledge about issues affecting them (like health, nutrition, etc.), initiatives have been launched by NCSTC in conceiving, designing, preparing and delivering radio programmes that can be heard by those located even in far-flung or remote areas. During the recent interventions, the focus has been on achieving gender equity and align with national priority Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao, which has been well leveraged by CRs across the entire country. NCSTC has so far supported 68 CRs under its Science for Women’s Heath & Nutrition (SWHN) initiative besides Radio Mathematics which is aimed at inculcating basic math skills among even the illiterate. The programmes, prepared through local expertise in the subject area and in vernacular, are aired twice a day and the time of broadcast is decided by community to ensure maximum mileage.
The Children Science Congress (CSC):
This is a flagship programme of the DST to initiate young students (10-17 years) in the method of science through hands-on, minds-on approach by doing projects. CSC encourages a child scientist to identify some societal problem and motivate her/him to arrive at a possible solution through research. They often work as a team under the mentorship of their teacher and try to understand the cause of a problem and solve the same.
The process encourages scientific thought process of child scientists and analyses application of scientific theories to problem solving. Focal theme of CSC in 2016 and 2017 was ‘Science Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Development with special emphasis on accessibility for Persons with Disabilities’. It covered almost all the districts of the country with a participation of over 500,000 students. Promising ideas and projects were shortlisted for presentation at state level and further scrutiny led to about 650 projects getting shortlisted for a presentation at the national level.
The whole process of CSC was guided by an Activity Guide Book (AGB) which was prepared in consultation with experts. The grand finale of CSC, popularly known as NCSC is held during 27-31 December each year. Child Scientists having the best projects of NCSC also participate in Rashtriya Kishore Vigyanik Sammelen held as a part of Indian Science Congress. They get opportunity to interact with the best of the Indian scientists to sharpen their scientific temperament and quench their thirst for knowledge and learning.
Indian Scientists: The Saga of Inspired Minds:
In order to developing scientific temper in the society, especially young students, interesting aspects about the inspiration that guided 54 Indian stalwarts in Science and Technology were presented in a publication titled “Indian Scientists: The Saga of Inspired Minds” with a message from Hon’ble Prime Minister about the book.
Survey of India (SoI) completes 250 years of its establishment
As a part of 250th anniversary celebrations during 23rd to 25th January 2017, SoI organized several technical activities and launched new initiatives. A set of two commemorative stamps were launched on the occasion.