Eperation Shakti (Pokhran-II) was initiated on 11 May 1998, and the first of the five nuclear tests were carried out. To commemorate the day, 11th May is officially recognised as National Technology Day in India.
India has come a long way since 1998 and has made great strides in the field of science—from sending probes to Mars to equipping everyday people with technologies like 4G, UPI (Unified Payment Interface) and so much more.
All this growth won’t stop anytime soon, and this can only be attributed to the people of India whose innovations and technological advancements are continually bettering the lives of people.
So, this National Technology Day, we take a look at five brilliant homegrown technological advancements that will redefine the growth of India.
1) SMAAT INDIA’S WATER ATM
In 2015, Karunakara M Reddy started a social enterprise called Smaat India Pvt Ltd., which aims to provide clean drinking water in rural areas at an extremely affordable rate.
Working for big corporates, Karunakara realised the importance of providing safe drinking water for rural India. He quit his job and started extensively researching on technologies that could give life to his idea.
He finally designed a water ‘ATM’ that can produce 3,000 litres of clean drinking water in one day at just 20 paise per litre!
Smaat has since then constructed over 2,800 water ATMs so far in 11 Indian states, benefitting over 75,00,000 people. What’s more, it provides the clean water facility to government schools for free.
Karunakara’s technology helped a lot of people get access to clean water, and if technology can make better lives, then this is a pristine example of it.
You can read more about the technology and its impact, here.
2) ATGC BIOTECH’S REVOLUTIONARY PEST CONTROL
The overuse of chemical pesticides has resulted in a lot of harm to the environment, and unfortunately, pests have also developed a resistance to most of them.
Conceding that pesticides can never be put to rest as the farming community will always need to use them, Dr Markandeya Gorantla founded ATGC Biotech in 2009, with a unique solution in mind for pest control—pheromones!
Pheromones are a class of semiochemicals that insects release to communicate with other individuals of the same species, for mating purposes.
ATGC Biotech’s innovation creates a false signal for the male insects and confuses the mating behaviour of insect pests, thereby preventing the pest population to build up.
This non-toxic and biodegradable solution helps to bring down the density of the insects in a given region without harming the farmers or farm workers. It also allows the farm produce to be harvested without the use of pesticides.
ATGC Biotech’s innovation does not only stop harmful chemicals from entering the environment but is also arming the farmers with a technologically advanced solution for pest control. You can read more about their innovation here.
3) DRISHTI’S AI APP FOR VISUALLY IMPAIRED
Drishti is an app created by the National Association for the Blind (NAB), in partnership with Accenture.
Using the latest AI technologies, including natural language processing, image recognition, and optical recognition, the app helps visually-impaired persons perceive the world in a unique way.
Drishti can also be integrated with smart glasses like Pivothead, which have a built-in camera that can send the information captured to the app. All users have to do is wear the glass, and tap on their phone to hear more about the world around them.
In addition to objects and text, Drishti can also analyse the faces of the people and identify the traits of the people the user is interacting with.
To know more about how Drishti was conceptualised, click here.
Drishti has been launched with 100 beneficiaries at NAB India, who have been asked to give their feedback and suggestions to improve and develop it further.
4) AUTONXT’S AUTONOMOUS E-TRACTOR
Automation is a technology that evolved to replace mind-numbing repetitive work. However, replacing the hard labour of farmers is an entirely different thing. Autonxt Automation is a start-up that set out to do just that!
Autonxt was started in 2016 by Mr Kaustubh Dhonde, and its flagship innovation is the battery-powered, self-driving tractor that can learn to adapt to the field it is in.
The tractor can run for 10 hours with an estimated range of 200 kilometres on a three-hour charge, and carry out activities like ploughing, tilling etc.
You can read the interview with the founder and find out more details about the tractor here.
5) A SENSOR THAT CAN DETECT CHRONIC KIDNEY DISEASE
Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is the gradual loss of kidney function, and till now there has been no definitive way to diagnose it without tests and screening that can cost people a lot of money, and in some cases, even their lives.
Researchers from CSIR’s (Council of Scientific and Industrial Research), New Delhi-based Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB) and Amity University, Rajasthan, have now devised a special sensor that can detect CKD in a matter of minutes.
The technique uses a highly sensitive electrochemical method, which can be used to detect the disease at different stages. If commercialised, the method would be useful for millions, as patients with diabetes and cardiovascular disease are prone to CKD, making it an innovation that can literally save the lives of people!
(Edited By Gayatri Mishra)
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