In-Depth

Climate Change Signals from North-Eastern India, the Wettest Place on Earth

Climate Change Signals from North-Eastern India, the Wettest Place on Earth

In a recent study, researchers from IIT Kharagpur have observed a significant change in the rainfall in the northeast in general and specifically at the wettest place on Earth, Cherrapunji-Mawsynram. The researchers observed rainfall changes in the past century (1901–2019) over the wettest place on the Earth and unveiled the first evidence for the signals of climate change and anthropogenic influence on rainfall changes in the region. The analysis of 119 years of rainfall data at 17 stations in Northeast India revealed that most of the stations show negative trends in rainfall, the highest in the summer monsoon and the…
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IIT Kharagpur’s Essential Oil Extractor to Economize Betel Leaf Oil Production in India

IIT Kharagpur’s Essential Oil Extractor to Economize Betel Leaf Oil Production in India

Antimicrobial and antioxidant rich betel leaf essential oil finds wide use in industrial applications including medicines, cosmetics and chewable mouth fresher The essential oil extractor reduces betel leaf wastage making essential oil production economically viable The process increases yield by 16%, reduces process time by 44% and energy input by 30%   There have been many tales of Paan - in songs, history and literature, religion and culture for many millennia, across hierarchies of society, in South and South-East Asia. While the use of Paan as a mouth freshener is under the radar of health agencies for carcinogenic effects, however,…
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Ozone and Ultra-filter based manufacturing tech to extend shelf life of packaged Sugarcane juice

Ozone and Ultra-filter based manufacturing tech to extend shelf life of packaged Sugarcane juice

Researchers at IIT Kharagpur have developed new process technology based on ozonization and ultra filtration for manufacturing shelf-stable sugarcane juice Sugarcane juice is a refreshing drink with an enriched nutritional profile. The juice accommodates health components such as, phytonutrients, antioxidants, and vitamins (like Vitamins C&B) which offer quick relief from heatstroke, dehydration, constipation, jaundice, etc. by supplying instant energy. Owing to the absence of simple sugars and low glycemic index (30-40), its average intake by diabetic persons is also acceptable. However, the colour and flavour unique to the juice get deteriorated immediately after its extraction due to biological processes of…
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Making Sanskrit Accessible through AI-based Text Processing

Making Sanskrit Accessible through AI-based Text Processing

Researchers at IIT Kharagpur are making Sanskrit accessible with their Artificial Intelligence-based system for processing Sanskrit texts There has been a renewed interest in Sanskrit since the announcement of NEP 2020. Various academic institutions both at school education as well as higher education are adopting various approaches for improving the reach of the language through training programs, research and outreach initiatives. While various digital resources have improved the accessibility and use of world languages and even regional languages, Sanskrit presents unique challenges in automated computational processing. In addition to the sheer volume and diversity, both stylistic and chronological, found in…
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Studying Plastic Pollution in the Ganga with National Geographic

Studying Plastic Pollution in the Ganga with National Geographic

Ganga, the life source of Northern and Eastern India is a prominent area of study by researchers from diverse disciplines, a key among them is the environment. In 2019, the National Geographic Society organized the expedition "Sea to Source: Ganges" to scientifically document plastic waste in the Ganges watershed and support holistic and inclusive solutions. A proud partner in this women scientists-led expedition was IIT Kharagpur along with the Isabela Foundation, University of Dhaka, the Wildlife Institute of India, and Wild Team Bangladesh. Researchers and students from an environment-focused group at the Dept. of Civil Engineering, IIT Kharagpur participated in…
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Turning Steel Slug Dump to Greenery Hub, IIT Kharagpur’s Transformative Work at Odisha

Turning Steel Slug Dump to Greenery Hub, IIT Kharagpur’s Transformative Work at Odisha

IIT Kharagpur Researchers Transform Steel Plant Slag Dumps in Odisha into Greenbelt Using Traditional Indian Organic Components and Japanese Afforestation Techniques A drive through Angul, near the Dhenkanal region of Odisha will give you vast stretches of green canopy and vegetation on what was once industrial dumpsites. The transformation to a green belt is not a natural reclamation but the Midas touch of the Post Mining Mine Site Restoration group of the Department of Mining Engineering of IIT Kharagpur through a project supported by Tata Steel BSL. The researchers afforested over 32000 square feet in the region following a rapid…
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IIT Kharagpur Innovates DGPS-Enabled Soil Mapping Tech for Effective Fertilization

IIT Kharagpur Innovates DGPS-Enabled Soil Mapping Tech for Effective Fertilization

Geospatial mapping is a buzzword today with the Govt. of India liberalizing the sector. There is another side of mapping that could transform the food security program of India; soil maps which could be accessed using differential GPS, developed by researchers at IIT Kharagpur for a variable rate of fertilization application in farmlands. The novel technology is aimed towards efficient use of Nitrogen, Phosphorous and Potash for automated soil nutrition management by bypassing both manual labour based operations or sensor-based fertilization technologies which are still under development. Spatial variations in soil type and mineral content in large agricultural tracts are…
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Book Review: Blue Infrastructures by Dr. Jenia Mukherjee

Book Review: Blue Infrastructures by Dr. Jenia Mukherjee

Dr. Jenia Mukherjee, Assistant Professor at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Kharagpur, has published a pioneering volume on Kolkata’s ecological history - Blue Infrastructures: Natural History, Political Ecology and Urban Development in Kolkata. Sponsored by ISIRD, SRIC, IIT Kharagpur, this book is a strong manifestation of interdisciplinary research on the urban environment. The author focuses on Kolkata, formerly the colonial capital of and currently a major megacity in India, in terms of its extensive blue infrastructures, i.e., its rivers, canals and wetlands as an integrated composite whole. "I have tried to unfold ways in which this reclaimed…
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Automating sugarcane plantation to boost profitability

Automating sugarcane plantation to boost profitability

Researchers at IIT Kharagpur have developed devices for automating a range of functions for planting sugarcane buds, fitted with an autonomous fungicide application with the aim to reduce labour hours and raw material wastage.  Sugarcane is a global industrial crop popular for the production of sugar, bioenergy, paper, ethanol, electricity etc. The economic importance of the crop in India is paramount with the country registering 17% of global sugarcane production, second only to Brazil. But each year the farmers are losing excess cane stalk as seed material due to conventional cultivation practice which is also labour and time-intensive thus increasing…
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Answering the Water Call

Answering the Water Call

IIT Kharagpur and Cardiff University to Jointly Develop Waste Water Treatment Solutions Researchers from IIT Kharagpur and Cardiff University have jointly bagged the Global Challenges Research Fund – Impact Acceleration Account (GCRF-IAA) Project 2020 towards the development of a photo-electro-catalytic (PEC) reactor for wastewater treatment.  Wastewater is increasingly becoming a global ‘health and livelihood challenge’, especially in developing countries. According to UN-Water globally, 80% of wastewater re-enters the ecosystem without any treatment affecting the health and livelihood of around 1.8 billion people. However, this wastewater can play a significant role in addressing urban water challenges, production of bioenergy, and even…
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