Science

Innovators set their sights on the big pitch

Preeti Mehra New Delhi | Updated on January 23, 2018 Published on May 14, 2015

Vikas Karade, Creator, TabPlan 3D being feted at the IIGP meet

IIGP gives enterprising individuals from India an opportunity to take to the skies





A record 1,300 applications were received in response to a call this year for innovators under the Department of Science & Technology and Lockheed Martin India Innovation Growth Programme (IIGP). The entrepreneurial and innovation pursuits submitted in the competition ranged across industries such as healthcare, energy, textiles, agriculture and digital.

Following presentations of some of the chosen out-of-the-box solutions researched by scientists, academicians, doctors and students, 20 of the innovators received cash awards while another 10 were chosen for an all-expenses paid trip to Silicon Valley in the US to pitch their ideas. “There is no dearth of innovative minds and scientists in the country. I have seen a lot of new things invented. These innovations will become successful only when they become beneficial for humankind,” said Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Science & Technology & Earth Sciences after giving out the awards at a function in the capital.

And results are already underway. The MiraCradle neonate cooler is already being used in several hospitals in tier 2 and tier 3 towns. This is a non-electronic, low-cost, passive cooling device to save newborns from asphyxia. It has been developed by Pluss Polymers along with CMC, Vellore.

Another innovation called the Guardian could potentially find a large user base as it has been designed as a wearable safety device that sends distress signals to police, family, and friends. Its USP is it works on a model including internet, SMS and even an SOS mode when there is no network.

The DosaMatic claims to be the world’s first, fully-automatic tabletop dosa maker that can make dosas at the touch of a button.

A healthcare innovation, TabPlan 3D is an app for orthopaedic surgeons to plan and simulate accurate surgeries with a 3Dview.

Also on the cards is a new dialysis solution that involves a screening “to identify high risk patients for chronic kidney disease leading to secondary care to delay disease progression. The tertiary care consists of a connected dialysis machine with an objective of increasing the patient’s longevity.” Balachandran S, Advisor to Renalyx Health Systems says the machine could save a large number of lives in rural areas where there is hardly any diagnosis of kidney disease and no help available in terms of dialysis.

On the impact of IIGP over the years, Prof Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology said the most recent economic impact assessment by Ernst & Young had put the revenue generation figure at ₹1,500 crore between 2007 and 2012. He also emphasised that many of the awarded technologies could facilitate the missions of the government including clean India, green India, digital India and Make in India.

IIGP was launched in March 2007 as a partnership between Lockheed Martin Corporation, FICCI and the IC2 Institute, University of Texas at Austin. In 2008 the government’s Department of Science & Technology and the Indo-US Science and Technology Forum joined the cause, while the Stanford Graduate School of Business came on board as knowledge partners in 2013. Since then over 4000 technology applications have been evaluated.

Published on May 14, 2015
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