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Monday, February 27, 2012

A formidable Triveni Sangam scripting desi tech thrillers | DRDO, industry, academia script a new chapter

By Anantha Krishnan M
Express News Service
Bangalore: Success breeds success and Indian defence R&D's is tasting just that. With hand-holding becoming the common norm in aerospace and defence, the Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Robotics (CAIR) too adopted the model of partnerships for various stages of the product life-cycle, while retaining certain core areas as its niche. The 'CAIR Model' hence became a reasonably unique experiment within the government setup and enabled the projection of its footprint on a larger canvass.
This model is a strategic one of collaboration for capacity and not capability. “Capability and capacity building are the two important facets of a technical organization. Usually, the former is the focus of R&D labs like CAIR and academia, while the latter is the focus of industries that thrive on the our innovations. Research often emanates from the portals of academia. World over, the seeds of research that is likely to culminate in a product are often sown in the precincts of university campuses,” say sources.
Interaction between the CAIR and academia brings in a synergy that helps raise the bar for both players. “Design, engineering and manufacturing are traditional core strengths of industry, and partnering with them on the lines of the CAIR Model would facilitate introduction of cutting-edge technologies into product design making them globally competitive,” say sources.
A recent venture by the CAIR is its participation in activities at the newly established Defence Research Innovation Center, at an adjoining campus of IIT, Madras (IITM). This research park is funded by DRDO and aims to bring faculty of IITM, leading industries, and scientists of DRDO towards a common cause of nurturing innovation. “We have successfully partnered with premier private sector industries and public sector undertakings, who have contributed excess of 1000 man years of support to us. This has very contributed to the long-list of successful systems that have been developed and fielded,” sources said.
Students beneficiaries: IIT Madras | For the last 10 years, IIT Mardas is partnering with CAIR on the electronics front. We are developing intelligent hardware and software for image processing, speech, cryptography, Artificial Intelligence, robotics and large-scale data analytics. Our goal is to make the software in India, tailor-made to DRDO's needs. Our students are the biggest beneficiaries of this unique bonding of all. - Prof Kamakoti, Head, Computer Science Dept, IIT Madras.
Win-Win Situation: Mahindra Satyam | We are engaged with CAIR in developing C4I and NCO systems for our Armed Forces. Our association is now close to three years with an aim to reduce the dependency on foreign companies. Its is a matter of pride for us to share our strengths and build core competence in some critical areas. It's a win-win situation for all. Karthikeyan Natarajan, Senior VP & Global Head, Integrated Engineering Solutions, Mahindra Satyam.
India Shining Story: DRDO | I have been speaking in one tone so that the DRDO, industry and academia come togther to strengthen our R&D. If we keep on importing, we will neever become a self-reliant nation? DRDO has many futuristic programmes and we are willing to hand-hold with Indian industries and educational institutions. We have the brains who can develop smart systems. To me, this is truly the 'India Shining' story. -- V K Saraswat, Director General, DRDO
Copyright@The New Indian Express

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