Not many young professors are as driven as Professor Prabeer Barpanda who has been donned with an unbelievable streak of academic awards. A professor at the Materials Research Centre, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, Prof. Barpanda is the winner of the Indian National Science Academy Young Scientist Award, 2016. He became the first Indian to receive the Energy Technology Division Supramaniam Srinivasan Young Investigator Award – an annual award given by the Electrochemical Society (ECS), USA, for 2016. In addition, he is also the first Indian to receive the American Ceramics Society’s Ross Coffin Purdy Award, 2016 awarded in October.
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Chandan Saha of the Computer Science and Automation department, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru is the winner of two prestigious national awards – the Indian National Science Academy (INSA) Young Scientist Award, 2016, and the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE) Young Engineer Award, 2016. He works in the areas of complexity theory and algorithms, and his lab is currently trying to study arithmetic circuits to understand computational efficiency as a function of time and computational memory.
The vivid and myriad colours of the natural world captivate our eyes and benefit life on earth. Learning how nature colours its palette advances our understanding of the world around us and hence scientists ubiquitously are trying to imitate designs inspired by nature, to fabricate better devices. Now, a collaborative study between researchers at the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research (JNCASR), Bengaluru, and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru, has proposed a novel technique to build better display devices that imitate naturally occurring colours.
Dropped your mobile phone? You may soon stop worrying about it, thanks to the newly discovered phenomena related to carbon nanotube foam used as a shock-absorbent material in mobile phones. As a material scientist, Prof. Praveen Kumar’s work on studying the mechanical behaviour of materials has earned him various awards, the most recent ones being the Indian National Science Academy Young Scientist Award, 2016, National Academy of Science, India -Young Scientist Platinum Jubilee awards - 2016 and Associate of Indian Academy of Science. In his Thermo-Electro-Mechanical Behaviour Lab at the Department of Materials Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Prof. Kumar and his students study the effects of size and electric fields on mechanical properties of materials and materials processing.
Indian Institute of Science (IISc.) entered a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Volvo group in India to pursue collaborative research in the field of transportation and automobiles. As per the MoU, Volvo Group Trucks Technology (GTT), the global research, engineering and development arm of Volvo, along with IISc, will embark on research and development in future automotive technologies. The MoU was signed by Dr. K. Paneer Selvam, Joint Registrar of IISc and Dr. Jan-Ove Östensen, VP Advanced Technology & Research, Volvo Group.
Turmeric is a ubiquitous ingredient in home remedies for ailments ranging from infections to arthritis. A mixture of turmeric and milk (haldi-doodh) has been used as a traditional cure for bone fractures. Modern science has shown that curcumin, the primary component of turmeric, possesses anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. In recent times, researchers in the field of bone tissue engineering, who seek to engineer novel strategies for bone tissue regeneration, are exploring the documented benefits of curcumin on bone growth. Now, a new study by Prof. Kaushik Chatterjee and his group at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bengaluru, shows that encapsulating curcumin in a restorable ‘scaffold’ enables sustained release of the chemical, and enhances bone repair. The study is an attempt to highlight the promise of phytochemicals, a class of molecules found in Indian spices, in bone tissue engineering.
In a society dominated by people who can independently carry out daily activities, the challenges faced by differently abled individuals are rarely acknowledged. With thoughtful design approaches, simple day-to-day activities could be made easier for such individuals. A great example of this is a novel hygiene product designed by Master students Shubham Pudke and Suyog Dhanawade under the guidance of Prof. Dibakar Sen at the Centre for Product Design and Manufacturing, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore to aid disabled women with just one functional hand. The newly designed sanitary napkin wearing aid not only meets the hygienic demands, but also enables its use without relying on a caregiver. “Activities of daily lives are primary activities for everyone for their dignity and independence from physical support of others. It enables other family members to explore sources of earnings when the primary bread earner becomes disabled due to any circumstances”, says Prof. Sen, elaborating on the motivation for the study.
Most entrepreneurs with a pioneer product face a common set of challenges - knowing how their product would be received in the market, finding the best strategy to advertise it and identifying the initial set of “seed users” who would use the product and provide feedback on its improvements. In the age of social media where information diffuses at massive speeds, how should one identify the set of users who have the maximum influence in reaching out to a larger crowd? In a recent collaborative study, researchers at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore and IBM India Research Labs have studied how information diffuses on social networks and have identified strategies to answer this question.
The campus of the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, was buzzing with an air of tender enthusiasm and aspiration, thanks to the visit of “Chetana” scholars. “Chetana” is a novel initiative to encourage and inspire talented young girls studying in government-run higher secondary schools across Karnataka, to take up a formal education in science. The Department of IT, BT and S&T, Government of Karnataka, has organized this program in collaboration with the Karnataka State Council for Science & Technology (KSCST) and IISc, Between 17th October and 27th October, 28 students selected in this program, visited IISc for 10 days and were provided with an opportunity to visit the research facilities and labs as well as interact with students and academicians of this prestigious institute.
In June 2015, Pratiksha Trust, Bangalore, founded by Infosys co-founder Senapathy “Kris” Gopalakrishnan and his wife Mrs Sudha Gopalakrishnan, set up three Distinguished Chair Professorships at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. The purpose of these Chair Professorships is to bring top-notch researchers in the areas of neuromorphic computing, computational neuroscience, machine learning, and data science to the IISc campus to help strengthen research, and international collaboration in these important emerging areas. The overall initiative is expected to foster intense research collaboration between world renowned researchers in these areas and the research community at several departments and centres of the Indian Institute of Science, including Computer Science and Automation, Centre for Neuroscience, Electrical Communication Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Electronic Systems Engineering, Mathematics, Molecular Biophysics, and Computational and Data Science.