40,000 MW power through nuclear energy by 2020: Sivathanu Pillai

The manned mission to moon by 2020 will pave way for tapping energy-rich helium-3 available in abundance on the satellite, said A. Sivathanu Pillai, Distinguished Scientist and Chief Controller, Defence Research and Development Organisation.

Energy generated through fusion process using helium-3 will be several fold higher than the fission method in vogue, he said, delivering the Bharat Ratna Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam Endowment Lecture at St. Joseph’s College on Thursday. The endowment was instituted by the faculty of Department of Physics, donors, well-wishers and alumni. In 10 years from the launch of Mars Orbiter Mission during November 2013, India will be in a position to document life on Mars. Mr. Sivathanu Pillai exuded confidence that high availability of thorium – India accounts for one-third of world reserves – will enable the country to achieve the target of 40,000 MW nuclear power generation by 2020. The country will be in a position to utilise thorium after processing to run the nuclear power plants, he said, referring to the development of Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor at Kalpakkam.

Mr. Sivathanu Pillai explained to students the various applications of nuclear power that included radiotherapy, chemotherapy, and preservation of agricultural produce through irradiation. Referring to the changing dimension of war theatre, he said India was a leader in supersonic missile production. The Brahmos missile could be launched from ground, mobile vehicle, ship, underwater, and aircraft. No other country could succeed in developing such a missile, he said, adding that the supersonic cruise missile was now dominating the subsonic ones. Leadership and creativity of the younger generation will play a key role in the future development of hypersonic missile, he said and detailed the progress made in nano applications for defence, nano material for smart radar, nano robot sensors, nano injectors and drug delivery system. Attributing India’s self-reliance in missile and space technology to former President A.P.J.Abdul Kalam’s pioneering research, Mr.Sivathanu Pillai who spoke on the topic ‘Innovative Young Minds’, said the world was in awe at India’s knowledge power, and the onus was on higher educational institutions to transform India’s 580 million youth into human resource. Presiding over, college prinicpal Rev. Fr.Albert Muthumalai spoke of the significant role of the institution in the success of the Green Kalam Movement. College secretary Rev. Fr.B.John Bosco addressed the students.