A science or engineering experiment will soon be a click away for thousands of students across the country.
Scholars will be able to polish their practical skills and conduct experiments through virtual labs, a first for India. The Human Resource Development Ministry granted Rs 80 crore for the project last week.
“The idea is to expand the range of experiments for students in far-flung areas,” a senior ministry official said.
The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) will set up the online labs in partnership with institutes such as the National Institutes of Technology and the Indian Institutes of Information Technology.
In the next six months, IIT-Delhi will begin rolling out some of the labs developed during the pilot project. Full-fledged labs will be ready in two years.
Students can perform remote triggered or simulation-based experiments.
In the first, the student has to log in and book a time-slot. The control of the equipment will be given to the student, who can perform the experiment sitting in a college hundreds of kilometres away.
This doesn’t require a physical instructor thanks to an instructional video and a step-by-step manual.
For simulated experiments, many students can simultaneously log in and conduct the experiments.