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IISc student team wins laurels in American Helicopter Society competition

Team Lakshya-IISc, a student team from the Department of Aerospace Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, has won laurels in the prestigious Student Design Competition conducted annually by the American Helicopter Society International. The team was adjudged the 'Best New Entry – Graduate Category' in a competition which witnessed participation by teams from the top universities in the world.

Teaching computers how to learn

Amidst the 400 acres lush green campus of IISc, sits a modest Department of Computer Science and Automation, which has a rich history in 'pattern recognition': the science of finding regularities in datasets. A few labs in the department work on a related and exciting branch of computer science called 'machine learning': the science of 'teaching' machines to recognise patterns in data, and learn from them. Prof Chiranjib Bhattacharya's 'Machine Learning Lab' is one among them.

Designing Tool from IISc helps designers generate twice the number of ideas

An IISc team has developed a new software tool that can help designers get inspiration from the best designer ever - nature. Aptly named 'Idea-Inspire', the tool can methodically and systematically help generate stimuli for designers to find creative solutions to their problems. The tool, inspired by design challenges in the aerospace industry, is already used by the industry leaders. The organisations that are using the science behind this tool to solve their design challenges include ISRO, University of Cambridge (UK), Montreal University (Canada), and world's leading aeroengine manufacturers Rolls-Royce and Pratt and Whitney.

An algorithm to detect traffic offences

Researchers from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) have developed a novel algorithm that can analyse traffic movement and aid in detection of unusual vehicular behaviour.
“We’re aiming to develop an algorithm to identify dominant flow paths along different directions and using these paths to detect any anomalies such as a vehicle moving beyond the speed limit or travelling along an unusual path”, says Srinivas, a member of the team that developed the new method.
Video cameras have long been used for surveillance of myriads of activities, from crowd behaviour analysis to traffic monitoring. Conventionally, such activities were analysed or monitored by human personnel. In recent years, thanks to proliferation of surveillance cameras, we are dumped with so much of data that it has become too expensive to analyse them through traditional methods. Hence, computerised techniques are being developed to assist security personnel in analysing such videos.

Virtual reality machines to train endoscopists better

Engineers from the Indian Institute of Science have developed an endoscopy simulator that simulates the effect of physical contact. In the long run, this technology can be made economical and can be used to train endoscopists by providing them an immersive training environment.

Powering Electronic Devices Through a Mercury Droplet

Researchers at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) have designed a new type of energy harvester that can scavenge electrical energy from weak vibrations. Vibration drives a liquid droplet and the motion of the liquid droplet produces electrical energy which can power portable electronic devices efficiently.
Conventional sources of energy are precious and they are getting exhausted at a very rapid pace. Scientists are looking for alternative sources of energy, like solar energy, wind energy, energy from bio waste etc., to replace the conventional sources. “Energy harvesting” is the conversion of unusual forms of energy, like heat, wind, vibration etc., which are otherwise wasted, into some usable form of energy. Efficient energy harvesting is the key to addressing our ever-increasing energy problem.

A shield to protect your devices from electromagnetic radiation

A recent study by Sourav Biswas, Goutam Prasanna Kar, and Suryasarathi Bose, from the Department of Materials Engineering at Indian Institute of Science (IISc) Bangalore has taken a step toward seeking the perfect shielding material. They have created a new material that has exceptional electromagnetic wave absorption capabilities in the microwave frequency, the frequency most often used by point-to-point communication devices.

Teaching a plate of brain cells to control a robot

A group of researchers at IISc have managed to "teach" the brain cells taken from a rat and cultured on a glass plate, to help navigate a robot through an arena—while avoiding obstacles.
The researchers took the brain cells of a rat, and allowed them to grow on a specialized tiny glass plate covered with multiple electrodes. They flooded it with a special liquid medium to keep it alive. In a few weeks, the cells grow specialised structures called dendrites, which connect to other cells, thus forming a network. This network starts showing spontaneous electrical activity with generation and transmission of tiny voltage spikes – much like within the brain.