‘Isro’s RAC-S will benefit students across South India’

‘Isro’s RAC-S will benefit students across South India’

The Regional Academic Centre for Space (RAC-S) set up in National Institute of Technology Karnataka (NITK), will empower students in southern India to develop a research attitude, Capacity Building Programme Office (CBPO), ISRO, Director Dr P Venkitakrishnan said on Friday.

“It is a futuristic programme for the student community and the seeds have been sown,” declared Dr P Venkitakrishnan after exchanging signed MoUs with NITK Director Prof Karanam Umamaheshwar Rao at the boardroom in NITK.

Dr Venkitakrishnan addressing the gathering said the centre was ISRO’s first such project in 2020. Elaborating on what is expected from the centre, CBPO Director said, “ISRO will release an annual grant of Rs two crore annually for conducting research and development projects, promotional activities among others. Both teachers and students should come up with solutions related to space science and space technology.”

Seed money

“Students should think on innovative ways of using space technology. Depending on the quality and quantity of research, the annual allocation will be increased from Rs two crore onwards. The activities, outreach programmes, periodical reviews will be done by JPMC (Joint Policy and Management Committee),” he said.

There are four centres including the regional centre in NITK. The centre in NITK will facilitate the promotion of space technology activities in southern states including Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Kerala and Lakshadweep islands.

Centre will engage with other institutes of excellence in the region to initiate R & D activities related to Space science. JPMC will facilitate collaborative activities between the partner institutions of southern states. “ISRO intends to be hand-holding agency and provide financial support to start-ups at their incubation centre,” he added.

MoU start of uphill task

NITK Director Prof Karanam Umamaheshwar Rao said the MoU is the start of an uphill task of rising upto the challenges. The collaboration is also fulfilling our dreams to work with ISRO on space science. We will come out with projects to benefit the country, he stressed.

Centre is student-centric

B.Tech and M.Tech students will be engaged in carrying out short term research projects of a yearlong duration, PhD students will be engaged in long term projects of 2-4 years relevant to the advancement of the space programme. Eligible students will also receive research fellowships.

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