When IITians’ grey cells sparred!, 2 June         

           Design-thinking followed by design-doing results into innovation and it happened at IIT Mandi as the students’ grey cells sparred to create several innovative and socially relevant products. The students showcased their products in working conditions during the Open House of Design Practicum (Prototype Development) on June 2nd, 2013 at the Kamand campus.

          The product that impressed the judges and visitors alike was the low cost 3-D printer based on the FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling) technology. Compared to the existing FDM 3D printers in the market, whose operating temperature is about 3200 C, students built the 3D printer that works at 1800 C, thus incurring less cooling cost and increasing the life of the machine. The printer printed 3D objects like wrench, cylinder, IIT Mandi logo, etc. This product was given the first prize.

          With rapidly depleting non-renewable resources becoming a concern, students designed a hybrid mobile charger that uses renewable wind and solar energy to charge the mobiles and tablets. Because of the low resistant circuit design of the charger, it can charge a mobile even without direct sunlight falling on it i.e. charging can be done even while comfortably sitting inside the house. The product was awarded the second prize.

          IIT Mandi’s innovative students also found solutions to every homemaker’s woes with products like ‘Self moving cloth rack and folding machine’ and ‘Three-in-one machine vacuum cleaner-cum-mopping-cum-floor dryer’. Self-moving cloths rack and folding machine was designed to tackle the problem of clothes getting wet or remaining outside after dark. The machine takes the clothes inside the wardrobe automatically when it rains or turns dark. The folding machine can fold the clothes if they are laid on it. The complete clean-up solution was provided by three-in-one machine vacuum cleaner-cum-mopping cum floor dryer. The fully automatic machine senses obstacles and cleans up without any human aid. It can also be remote-controlled. It has dual charging system i.e. the battery can be charged through the household power supply as well as solar energy.

          Another useful product designed was the automatic trash compactor. It is a fully automatic machine that compresses trash put into thus reducing its volume. It can hold trash almost 9-10 times more than normal-sized dustbins and applies a force of 300 Newtons. Another of its innovative feature is that when the compactor reaches its maximum limit then it will automatically send a signal to the base station (the place where all the compactors are managed), which will tell them the trash bin ID number for the dustbin to be emptied. It can be used in office premises, college premises or even households.

          Other interesting products displayed on the occasion were Multipurpose Humanoid Hand, Hardcopy to Softcopy Convertor, Automatic Braking Systems for Railways to curb train accidents, Automatic Wheel Chair-Cum-Bed, Dust suppression water sprinkler, Intelligent Parking System, Automatic paper recycler, Seed Sowing Robot for hilly region, Volumetric 3D Led Display, Auto-Navigation Tool for Blind People, Home Automation System, Bike on the back and Movement Tracking Device.

IIT Mandi students demonstrate the working of low cost 3D printer as Mrs. Priscilla Gonsalves looks on.