Chennai

‘Indian scientists working tirelessly on Mine the Moon for Helium-3’

A. Sivathanu Pillai, distinguished professor of ISRO, receiving the life time achievement award on Monday.— Photo: G. Sribharath

A. Sivathanu Pillai, distinguished professor of ISRO, receiving the life time achievement award on Monday.— Photo: G. Sribharath

Renowned defence technologist A. Sivathanu Pillai, said Indian scientists were working tirelessly to mine the moon for Helium-3, which could be used in nuclear reactors to provide enormous amount of power without any harmful carbon emissions or radioactive products.

He was addressing the gathering of academicians and research students at the two-day National level Conference on Science, Engineering and Technology (NCSET–2016) organised by School of Electronics Engineering, VIT University, Chennai campus on Monday.

In his plenary address, he urged the students to pursue research-oriented subjects. He said, currently, a number of global scientists, including those from India were working on International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor and their focus was to develop a fusion reactor that used helium 3 and deuterium. Interestingly, the solar winds have helium, but our atmosphere absorbs it.

However, on the moon, there is no atmosphere as such and helium lies there untapped. “I hope that in the next two decades, we could see missions being carried out to tap the resources in moon,” the scientist said.

Mr. Pillai exuded confidence that high availability of thorium — India accounts for one-third of world reserves — would enable the country to achieve the target of 40,000 MW nuclear power generation by 2020.

Assistant Vice President, VIT University, Chennai, Kadhambari S. Viswanathan, presented the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ to Mr. PillaiConvener and the Dean, School of Electronics Engineering, S.R.S. Prabaharan said the event would help students exchange knowledge..


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Printable version | May 25, 2022 6:59:43 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/indian-scientists-working-tirelessly-on-mine-the-moon-for-helium3/article8549158.ece