According to reports, IIT Madras should concentrate on applied science and research, and projects that could benefit Tamil Nadu and the country at large, according to Mohan Varghese Chunkath, Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary.
The Institute had always emphasised on pure science, but there is need to work on applied science.
Projects on providing quality water and cost effective desalination projects could be great importance to the State, he said.
Chunkath said Tamil Nadu, along with Rajasthan and Gujarat, has abundant solar energy which should be harnessed to the full. Here again, the IIT Madras can help the State by developing cost effective solutions for water heating and power generation to be used in refrigeration and air-conditioning. “I have not seen work in this area,” he said.
Solar thermal can be used in areas like food storage, cold chain and fish loading centres. Countries like Germany, Turkey and Australia have tried this successfully. India has a tropical climate and looking at solutions for air-conditioning and refrigeration using solar energy, he said.
Chunkath was addressing the inaugural of an executive education programme on project management for government officials handling large infrastructure projects. The Tamil Nadu Infrastructure Development Board has partnered with the IIT-Madras for the programme.
S Krishnan, CEO, TNIDB, said as per the Vision 2023 document, 217 significant infrastructure projects are to be implemented across the State.
These are complex engineering projects that will need to be implemented in fast-track mode, to high levels of quality and will therefore pose significant project management challenges. The TNIDB is committed to developing capacity within government departments to successfully manage such complex projects, he said.