CHENNAI : Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) students from the Centre for Innovation (CFI) organised the second edition of the annual Research Conclave at the campus today (4th November 2023).
The objective was to showcase the cutting-edge technology developed by students to other academics, industry professionals and investors. Further, a ‘Competition Team Demo Day’ was also organized featuring the various prototypes developed by CFI competition teams in the last six months.
Some of the notable projects showcased during the event included a solar-powered race car, a reusable sounding rocket, fixed-wing UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) for military surveillance, a CFI Guide Robot, clean energy marine vessels, autonomous underwater vehicles for oceanographic exploration, a Braille book emulator, and sound-scaping spectacles for the auditory-impaired.
The Research Conclave featured an impressive display of 73 projects, presented by 14 technical clubs and 7 competition teams. Over 800 students actively participated in this event, highlighting the widespread involvement and dedication to innovation.
Applauding the innovations IIT Madras Alum Mr. Ravishankar Shiroor, Co-Founder and COO, Stellapps, an IIT Madras incubated start-up, said, “I am excited to be at the 2023 Research Conclave of CFI @ IITM. Its the place where some of the brightest students of our country are innovating hands-on on the latest cutting edge of applying technology to solve real life problems. If you want to see first-hand all the latest innovation from the best next-gen entrepreneurs, this is the place to be!”
One of the largest student-run bodies in the country, CFI provides students with access to funding and state-of-the-art facilities including 3D printers, laser cutters and electronics workstations, among other facilities. So far, over 100 patents and many student-led start-ups have originated from CFI in various fields such as AI, robotics, biotechnology, electronics, and various other technology-driven sectors.
Elaborating on the importance of bodies like CFI to nurturing innovation, Prof. Prabhu Rajagopal, Advisor (Innovation and Entrepreneurship), IIT Madras, said, “The research conclave is an important mid-year review of the social and innovative projects at CFI. it is an occasion to showcase the deep reaearch and concepts being explored by the club teams of CFI.”
Highlighting the impact of Research Conclave, Prof. Prabhu Rajagopal added, “This year we are also co-conducting Triumph especially for the competition teams of CFI to showcase their cutting-edge products that have won acclaim at international events through the last couple of months. The response of students, faculty and industry to the showcases has been overwhelming and propels us forward in our journey of excellence.”
Elaborating on the outcomes envisaged from the event, Mr. Sarthak Saurav, Student Executive Head, CFI-IIT Madras, said, “The Research Conclave is expected to create opportunities for students to collaborate with industry professionals and investors. By showcasing our work, the current students aim to inspire and encourage incoming students to engage in innovative endeavours. This year’s edition boasts participation from a wider range of sectors and domains within the technology field. The number of student teams and members involved in presenting their projects has grown.”
This event also serves as an opportunity to ignite the enthusiasm for technology among incoming students, ensuring the long-term success of CFI. The key objectives of the conclave include:
Ø Fostering Innovation: The primary objective is to promote and celebrate innovation within CFI. It offers students a chance to demonstrate their creative projects.
Ø Industry Guidance: The event aims to provide students with guidance and financial aid from industry experts and professors, facilitating real-world applications of their work.
Sharing his/her experience on Research conclave, Mr. Suparn Gupta, a 3rd Year Civil Engineering student and Head, 3D printing Club, CFI-IIT Madras, said, “CFI is a truly amazing place to be. Every day, I walk in with a smile, knowing I’m surrounded by brilliant minds from our institute who share a deep passion for innovation. The support we receive from CFI is incredible; it provides us with an exceptional environment for work and collaboration with like-minded individuals.”
Mr. Abhishek Gupta, a 4th Year Civil Engineering Student and Project Lead, Aero Club, CFI-IIT Madras, said, “My SIP journey has been a rollercoaster of discovery. It has been a learning experience in every sense, from technical skills to effective teamwork and even securing a patent. The enthusiasm and dedication of our team members have been the driving force behind our success. I am eager to see where our project leads us next.”
Mr. Shakti Sharma, a 2nd Year Engineering Physics Student and Team Member, Team Abhiyaan, CFI-IIT Madras, said, “Working with Team Abhiyaan at CFI, where students take the lead in creating autonomous robots and vehicles, is an incredibly enriching journey. Every day, I dive into new experiences to gain hands-on practical knowledge and collaborate closely with my team on building real autonomous systems.”
Some of projects showcased during the occasion include
Ø Solar-powered race car
Ø clean energy marine vessels, & autonomous underwater vehicle for oceanographic exploration
Ø a reusable sounding rocket
Ø Braille book emulator, and sounds caping spectacles for the auditorily-impaired
Ø fixed-wing UAVs for military surveillance
With a strong student community that brings solutions from low-cost medical devices to sustainable transportation solutions, CFI encourages students to work on projects that have the potential to make a positive impact on society.