ISRO-NITK jointly set up Regional Academic Centre for Space in Surathkal

P.V. Venkitakrishnan, Director, Capacity Building Programme Office, ISRO, and Karanam Umamaheswar Rao, Director, National Institute of Technology, with the MoU for setting up a Regional Academic Centre for Space at Surathkal, Mangaluru, on Friday.   | Photo Credit: H.S. MANJUNATH

A Regional Academic Centre for Space came into being at the National Institute of Technology – Karnataka (NITK), Surathkal, with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and the institute signing a memorandum of understanding here on January 3.

The centre will act as a facilitator for the promotion of space technology activities in the southern region comprising Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Kerala and Lakshadweep.

With this the ISRO and the NITK are partnering to carry out advanced joint research and development activities in the area of space technology applications. The centre will pursue advanced research in the areas relevant to the future technological and programmatic needs of the Indian space programme.

P.V. Venkitakrishnan, Director, Capacity Building Programme Office, ISRO, said that the centre will act as an ambassador for the capacity building, awareness creation and research and development activities of ISRO. The activities will be directed to maximise the use of the research potential, infrastructure, expertise and experience already existing in ISRO and NITK. The centre will consist of faculty members and researchers from NITK and visiting scientists and experts from ISRO.

Mr. Venkitakrishnan said that the activities will be guided by a joint policy and management committee consisting of top executives from both the institutes. The committee will plan promotional activities including research programmes of common interest and periodically review such programmes and related activities. It will also facilitate collaborative activities between the partner institutions in the southern states. The ISRO will provide annual grant, as recommended by the committee, to the tune of ₹2 crore per year for the activities and administrative expenses of the centre, he said.

The ISRO scientist said that the centre at NITK is the fourth regional academic centre for related research and development in India. The other centres are in Malaviya National Institute of Technology, Jaipur; Gauhati University; and in Kurukshetra University.

Karanam Umamaheswar Rao, Director, NITK, said that the joint research and development activity will actively engage students of NITK and partner institutions. While BTech and MTech students will be engaged in carrying out short-term projects of one-year duration, PhD students will be engaged in long-term projects of two to four years relevant to the advancement of the space programme. Eligible students will also receive research fellowships during the project period. The intellectual property generated as part of this research activity will be jointly owned by ISRO and NITK.

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Printable version | Oct 21, 2021 5:55:00 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/isro-nitk-jointly-set-up-regional-academic-centre-for-space-in-surathkal/article30471229.ece

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