Engg student throws ‘lifeline’ to those working on power lines

Our Bureau Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on January 22, 2018 Published on December 24, 2015

‘iPost’ wins first prize at ‘IoT with open source hardware’ contest

Ingenuity of an engineering college student may just have thrown a lifeline to the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) employees who risk their lives while working on power lines.

Shyam Pradeep of Government Engineering College, Thrissur, developed ‘iPost’ (for intelligent electric post) that bagged the first prize at a project contest based on the theme ‘IoT with open source hardware.’

Safety device

The contest was held as part of the Free and Open Source Software (Foss) Young Professional Meet organised by the International Centre for Free and Open Source Software (Icfoss) here the other day.

As its nomenclature suggests, the first prize-winning iPost is intended essentially to ensure the safety of KSEB workers who work on electric posts/poles and the power lines, a spokesman for organisers said.

There have been a number of instances in which accidental ‘charging’ (energising) of the power lines has claimed the lives of workers.

iPost seeks to rule out this occupational hazard since it empowers the worker to control the power line through a simple circuit fixed on to his safety gloves.

Cognitive robot

Another application of iPost is in the area of monitoring streetlights. It informs the KSEB office whenever a streetlight malfunctions and helps rectify it in good time.

The National Institute of Electronics and Information Technology, Kozhikode, claimed the first-runner up prize for its project named ‘citywide water quality monitoring,’ the spokesman said.

It helps ensure the quality of water supplied in city areas and also streamline the piped water distribution.

iBot, a social cognitive robot, developed by TCS, clinched the joint first runner-up prize.

This wheeled robot can comprehend human presence and functions as an ‘android brain’. The robot can be controlled through gestures or by voice and it can do a variety of functions.

Diagnostic toolkit

The second runner-up prize went to Vivek Sureshkumar of Mar Baselios College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram.

He and his team developed ‘Upasana’, a diagnostic toolkit which will be of help to the volunteers of the Accredited Social Health Activists (ASHA) in rural areas and is aimed at democratising rural healthcare.

Upasana is a non-invasive medical diagnostic tool kit designed to help ASHA workers measure vital parameters of patients in rural areas and transfer the data to the doctors at the hospital for diagnosis.

K Mohammed Safirulla, Director, Kerala State IT Mission, gave away the prizes at a function held here in the presence of Jayasankar Prasad, Director of Icfoss.

Published on December 24, 2015
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