IIT Kharagpur has decided to allocate research funding for R&D work related to COVID-19.
IIT Kharagpur submitted a list of projects to the IIT Council last week of which eight projects have been selected to be funded on COVID-19 healthcare technology development.
In a recent tweet, the institution has confirmed the news by stating — “@IITKgp Allocates Funding for 8 Research Projects on #COVID19 Healthcare Technology Development. Recently DrRPNishank, Hon’ble Minister, @HRDMinistry congratulated Director @tewari_virendra & the researchers.”
Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank, Hon’ble Minister, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Govt. of India has appreciated the initiative by IIT Kharagpur on his social media, congratulating the Director Prof. Virendra Kumar Tewari and his team of researchers.
When asked about the initiative, Director Tewari said “It is our responsibility to improve the quality of life of the last person in the society. While we built some quick technologies to cater to the immediate needs of the essential service providers at the campus, we were simultaneously preparing project proposals and evaluating them keeping in mind the immediate need of the country, cost and product delivery period.”
According to the IIT Kharagpur release, the researchers would be working on several technologies for these projects. These technologies include design and development of the rapid diagnostic kit, real-time PCR machine, bodysuit for COVID-19 infected patients, personal protective equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers. Some others include portable shredder integrated with steriliser, Hazmat Suit with cooling air circulation for medical professionals, bootstrapping Ambu-bag as an automatic ventilator, telemedicine for fighting the deadly pandemic and production of recombinant proteins for vaccine and testing.
And for all these eight projects, an amount of Rs. 50 Lakh has been allotted for phase I, towards the development of prototypes. The release stated that the prototypes of these projects are expected to be ready within a duration of three to four weeks. However, some of them might take about six months to deliver the results.
The institute stated that they are going to start working on phase one immediately after the lockdown is relaxed and as soon as the research staff can attend the laboratories. Meanwhile, software-related work would progress as usual.
“IIT Kharagpur has a proven track record towards the development of indigenous health and hygiene technologies which are affordable, high-quality at par with globally accepted standards, and commercially viable. Our researchers are committed to delivering the prototypes within a constrained timeline considering the healthcare needs in the current situation,” concluded Director Tewari.