Under the Coal Science and Technology (S&T) Grant initiated in 1975, the NLC has been sanctioned Rs. 78.68 lakh

S.P. Kumaresh Babu, associate professor, Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, National Institute of Technology–Tiruchi (NIT-T), has received a grant of Rs. 215.31 lakh from Central Mine Planning and Design Institute Limited, as leader of a collaborative project with Neyveli Lignite Corporation, to prevent erosion of inner walls of steel pipes used in the mines.

Under the Coal Science and Technology (S&T) Grant initiated in 1975 to shore up production methods in sync with rising energy demands, the NLC has been sanctioned Rs. 78.68 lakh. The researches being carried out with the Coal S & T grants have been facilitating modernisation of mining methods to improve productivity and safety, and ensuring conservation and optimum utilisation of coal resources in the country with minimum damage to the environment.

Mr. Kumaresh Babu's four-year project is titled: Enhancing life of de-watering pipes in coal/lignite mines by prevention of erosion-corrosion with nano-crystalline surface engineering treatments. In NLC, the ERW (Electric Resistance Weld) carbon steel pipes used for hydro transport of slurry water from inside area of mines undergo considerable inner erosion due to fast moving solids in the slurry. The rate of erosion and corrosion depend on particle size, hardness, angle of impingement, velocity, pH of water, concentration of various ions, and dissolved oxygen.

The project would analyse basic causes for erosion – corrosion of pipelines, mechanism of erosion-corrosion and to develop suitable nano crystalline surface engineering treatments to reduce erosion-corrosion.

The research areas of interest for Mr. Kumaresh Babu, who has 17 years of experience in industry and teaching, constitute metal casting, corrosion and surface engineering, and composite materials.