Projects

Project Nature:

The project will be experimental in nature.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

The laboratory for high-performance ceramics focuses on developing ceramic materials and technologies for energy harvesting and a clean environment. The ongoing projects include the use of solar energy for water splitting to produce hydrogen, developing visible light active ceramic foams for dye degradation of contaminated water, triboelectric nanogenerators for energy harvesting for powering small-scale devices including developing advanced ceramics from agricultural wastes. Depending on the interests of the student, one of the aforementioned projects can be taken up.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Materials science, ceramic science and engineering, mechanical engineering.

Project Nature:

Field work, experimental, modeling.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

The local energy system (LES) of a village economy consists of 4 streams, electricity, biomass, commodity fuels and waste streams. In addition, there are a few applications using solar drying, such as grain drying in open farms after harvest. These streams are often not designed to work together and their utilization is also not optimized for lowest cost and carbon footprint. For example, free electricity provided during some time in the day encourages indiscriminate water pumping, but the lack of availability of power due to the poor economics of the farmer denies him the ability to create value addition using the commodities produced in his or her farm. At an individual level, it is not possible for a farmer to sustain value addition due to lack of scale. However, a village as a collective unit for consideration of value addition and as a complete energy system is a sustainable proposition.
A village as an LES consists of many entities who can be producers, consumers and also prosumers. This is applicable for energy as well as the value-added products and services in the community. In order to unlock the value chain and make the rural economy sustainable, the LES should be operated to maximize the four R model, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Replace.

Through this project the following deliverables are envisaged:

1. Design of a schema for power generation and consumption mix, with the right amount of prosumers, producers, consumers with an optimum amount of energy storage.
2. Implementation of the four R model, with the study the use of other energy vectors in the local energy system and find suitable options that align with the four R model.
3. Integration of other local sources, available specific to the geography and the region such as micro-wind or micro-hydel which can be integrated into the LES along with solar PV for realization of lowest LCoE or LACE.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Engineering, MBA, Development Studies, Agricultural Economics.

Recommended Reading

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Please answer the following question against your chosen project in the application form

What are the problems you are looking to solve? Who are the people who suffers from the problem. If you come-up with a solution, what will change?

Project Nature:

Field work, implementation and evaluation of technologies, demonstration of technologies, studying market economics.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Agricultural produce is seasonal, while demand has become near constant. This leads to over supply during certain times, leading to depression of prices and high demand with high price for consumers. However, the producer does not gain much through these. Simple technologies such as solar dryer, solar micro cold storage can help with long term value addition and short term logistics respectively. Through this project, our objective is identify the scale and level at which these interventions can be implemented to make economic sense. We will also map the players required in the ecosystem need to deliver sustained value and ensure guaranteed livelihood. We have already deployed a few solar dryers and solar PV driven micro cold storage. A case study and field work approach will be used to assess the success and shortcomings of these deployments and identify opportunities for improvement. We will deploy the improved technology and market framework in a pilot site and study the efficacy. The outcomes expected are 1.) The technology stack that is most useful with the highest return on investment. 2.) Market development models and the partners needed for success. 3.) Funding mechanisms.

Preferred Background of Applicants

MBA, Engineering, Economics, Developmental studies, Finance, Agricultural technologies.

Recommended Reading

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Please answer the following question against your chosen project in the application form

What is the problem you are trying to solve? Who has the problem? What are they doing to solve the problem? If you have a solution, how will their life change?

Project Nature:

This project will develop the scientific knowledge base for Industry 4.0 tools (sensors, robotics, AI/ML & Blockchain) that find application in the management of Data and Assets in Water, Health & Sanitation assets.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

The goal of the project will be to develop novel applications of Industry 4.0 tools for socially vital segments of water, health and sanitation. Based on student interest, specific work can be tailored on sensors, robotics or data-driven approaches in the management of assets such as water & sewer pipes, septic tanks, and healthcare data platforms. The goal is to develop solutions to Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 4-6 range so that they can be scaled and applied in the field by interested parties after project completion. There will also be opportunities for the students to participate in the latter technology translation aspect.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Mechanical Engineering (including Applied Mechanics), Applied Physics, Mechatronics, Electrical and Electronics, Computer Science, Naval Sciences, Mathematics.

Details of reference articles or other materials to be read before applying

Many materials are here: https://drive.google.com/drive/u/2/folders/1Bx9_td7T6dolNtMTq3WS6XW31PP2QTe4

In addition:

  1. https://www.moneycontrol.com/promo/mc_interstitial_dfp.php?size=1280×540
  2. https://www.indiatoday.in/education-today/news/story/iit-madras-along-with-nairobi-university-enhance-ultrasound-technology-amid-coronavirus-pandemic-1702870-2020-07-21

Please answer the following question against your chosen project in the application form

Have you wondered about the social impact that technological innovations can make?

Project Nature:

Making use of the many parts of the Palmira tree as a construction material with the aid of modern technology to make it efficient and environment resistant structural member.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

To study the Palmira trunk and the leaf stem for their mechanical, environmental and thermal properties. Introduce thermo- plastic or thermosetting resins as a coating material and study the mechanical and thermal properties. Develop sandwich structures for high strength application and study its performance.

Preferred Background of Applicants

BE/BTech in Mechanical, Aerospace or Civil Engineering.

Project Nature:

Model Conceptualization, Field Study & Data Analysis.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Connecting the premier institute of a country with rural schools applying different education models. This will involve hands-on-training, application of technology and other means of knowledge dissemination.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Engineering, Humanities and other relevant areas. Most importantly candidate must be interested in working with rural schools and rural education.

Details of reference articles or other materials to be read before applying

please visit: www.teachtolearn.co.in to get an idea about one/two such models.

Please answer the following question against your chosen project in the application form

Are you passionate about contributing towards the development of rural education of your country?

Project Nature:

Empirical basis with some software development.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Most IT tools today meet the requirements of megaprojects but are inappropriate for low-income construction particularly in developing countries and rural areas. The aim of this project is to develop simple tools, using platforms such as Excel or VBA, that can be used on the ground to better manage construction projects.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Civil engineers with an interest in software and in visiting construction sites. ‘Boots on the ground’ will be important.

Project Nature:

The project involves development and assessment of natural fibre reinforced compsoites using advanced manufacturing techniques for specific applications in electric vehicles. The student is expected to carryout experimental translational research and also numerical studies.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

The use of light weight and sustainable materials for next generation mobility is increasing and there is a need of supporting research that will assist the industry to gain confidence. The material property requirements in different parts of electric vehicles is different to what is used in the conventional automotives and detailed research is needed.

The sustainable composites are one of the promising candidates and the objective of the project is to design the part, carryout analysis, development and perform validation.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Mechanical Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering.

Project Nature:

Computational and Experimental.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Higher yield and quality are essential for sustainability of farming. Actions such as protecting crop from diseases and providing correct amount of nutrients can help achieving the goal of higher yield and quality crop. Precision farming allows us to achieve this goal through time-to-time monitoring of crop health using portable spectroscopy and smart devices. Further, these handheld spectrometers can be used for determining quality of crop at the end of the harvesting. The main objectives of this project are as follows: (i) Develop data-driven algorithms for analyzing spectral data from portable NIR spectrometer, (ii) integrate Ultra-mobile NIR Spectrometer and data-driven algorithms for on-site testing, and (iii) develop decision making guidelines by combining NIR spectroscopy and native farming practices in collaboration with farmers.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Electrical/Electronics Engineer, Computer Science Graduates, Instrumental Engineers or Chemical Engineers.

Details of reference articles or other materials to be read before applying

General articles Adamchuk, Viacheslav I., et al. “On-the-go soil sensors for precision agriculture.” Computers and electronics in agriculture 44.1 (2004): 71-91.
Gebbers R, Adamchuk VI. Precision agriculture and food security. Science. 2010 Feb 12;327(5967):828-31.

Technical articles Handheld NIRS sensors for routine compound feed quality control: Real-time analysis and field monitoring Modrono S., Soldado A., Martinez-Fernandez A., de la Roza-Delgado B. (2017) Talanta, 162, pp. 597-603.

Chen XP, Cui ZL, Vitousek PM, Cassman KG, Matson PA, Bai JS, Meng QF, Hou P, Yue SC, Römheld V, Zhang FS. Integrated soil–crop system management for food security. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2011 Apr 19;108(16):6399-404.

Please answer the following question against your chosen project in the application form

How will you dissimilate the acquired knowledge and developed technology to farmers?

Project Nature:

May involve Analysis, simulation, optimization, hardware, field implementation.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Water distribution networks (WDNs) are important infrastructural assets for human settlements. Piped water distribution networks (WDNs) supply water from sources such as dams, lakes, ponds to the consumers through a network of pipes, valves, pumps and intermediate storage tanks. The main purpose of the water distribution system is to deliver water to consumer with required quantity, quality and adequate pressure. It is estimated that water supply and treatment accounts for nearly 8% of global energy consumption.
We have developed methods for design, operation and monitoring water networks. Optimal operation of water distribution networks requires meeting consumer demands at desired pressures in an efficient and equitable manner while conserving resources. If sufficient water is available, the objective is to meet consumer demands while preventing wastage. On the other hand, if the available water is insufficient or inadequate to meet consumer demands at the required pressures (which is the case in many cities), equitable distribution of the available resource is of primary importance. We have developed methods for leak detection and pipe burst prevention which are especially relevant in the Indian context. This project ideas on monitoring and control are expected to result in reduced water waste (by detecting and preventing leaks), reduced energy and significantly improved operation. Improvement in water supply has significant implications resulting in improved quality of life, health and overall societal progress.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Chemical, civil, electronics, computer science.

Details of reference articles or other materials to be read before applying

“1. V. Kurian, C. Saravanan, A. Natarajan, S. Narasimhan and S. Narasimhan, “Optimal operation of water distribution networks with intermediate storage facilities” Computers and Chemical Engineering, 119 (Nov), 215-227, 2018.
7. A. Rajeswaran, S. Narasimhan and S. Narasimhan, “Graph partitioning approach to leak detection in water networks”, Computers and Chemical Engineering, 108, 11-23, 2018.”

Recommended Reading

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Project Nature:

Understanding evaporation dynamics to reduce water losses from water bodies.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

The project objective is to find out the evaporative flux from a horizontal liquid surface as well as study the structures which cause that flux and obtain a scaling for their geometrical properties and dynamics, which can then be related to the evaporative flux.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Physics, Agricultural Engineering.

Details of reference articles or other materials to be read before applying

The attached paper.

Recommended Reading

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Project Nature:

To find out the evaporative flux from porous materials, and its dependence on the fluid and porous media properties.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Evaporation from porous soils is the major cause of water loss in agriculture. The study will try to parametrise the evaporative flux from porous media and build models that relate the dimensionless flux to the relevant dimensionless numbers.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Mechanical engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Physics.

Recommended Reading

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Project Nature:

Experimental and computational in nature.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

To find out the effectiveness of the method of burying an earthern pot filled with water for irrigation of plants. The study would measure the evaporative looses as well as the lon term availability of water to the plants from such an arrangement.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Mechanical engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Physics.

Project Nature:

Experimental.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Modifying the soil surface to encourage condensation so as to induce due-based irrigation.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Physics.

Project Nature:

Experimental and theoretical.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

The study would explore the interaction of flow over fungii grown ( or similar micro flexible hairy surfaces) to study the drag law, interaction of boundary layers with flexible hairs and spore ejection.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Physics.
.

Project Nature:

Experimental and field data collection.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Plastics are the biggest challenge particularly in sanitary waste management. Exploring innovative technology of processing plastic/rubber waste for augmenting construction material in preparing light weight brick, tiles and paver blocks.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Civil Engg.

Please answer the following question against your chosen project in the application form

Are you prepared to get your hands dirty and work in lab trials and field visits?

Project Nature:

Development of an IoT device for detecting changes in Cattle behaviour.

Brief Project Description and Objectives:

Bovine Activity Monitor Device

Large-scale dairy operations require an efficient automated heat detection system to accurately determine when the cows are ready for insemination. Accurate detection of estrus behaviour for breeding on dairy farms is essential to dairy profitability as missed estrus periods cost dairymen. The interest in monitoring cow’s behaviour for automated detecting estrus or unhealthy motion has steadily grown in recent years.

Visual observation is a commonly used method of heat detection. It involves a trained observer’s recognizing and recording signs of heat. This method requires observation of cattle at least twice daily, typically early in the morning and late in the evening for best results. More frequent observation of cattle for heat improves detection accuracy and increases the likelihood of recognizing the optimal time for breeding cattle, particularly in cattle in which heat is less intense or shorter in duration. Nearly 20 percent more cattle will be observed in heat when checked four times per day versus checking twice daily.

A number of other methods have been proposed which are either very expensive for implementation by marginal farmers or too complex which need highly trained man-power to maintain the equipment. We propose using a combination of gait-detecting device coupled with AI and communication backhaul to address this problem.

The proposed device is intended to be used for estrus detection through algorithm developed based on the interpretation of measured data to identify cow’s behaviour and act inspired by the true estrus events indicated by biological markers (Fig 1.1 and Fig 1.2).

The technology is focused on impactful use of IoT and artificial intelligence at grassroot level to determine bovine estrus. We propose to execute two classes of algorithms in this project to understand its efficacy during the proof of concept phase.
This constitutes algorithm ensemble:

• Utilizing AI supervised training with annotated datasets with data from the cattle from different heat signatures at various days of the month (supervised learning) from different breeds.
• Mapping the movement/activity data into mathematical family of distributions to personalize each animal (unsupervised learning) for different breed.

Preferred Background of Applicants

Circuits and Communication.

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