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Finding a place in the heart of the big players in the industry

From funding to setting up labs to offering internships to students that have been converted to jobs, industries have given a high five to this technology college in Pune

education Updated: Jun 12, 2014 11:43 IST
Ayesha Banerjee

If one were to take an institute as an experimental lab, then the College of Engineering Pune (COEP) should definitely be studied for the advantages to be had from industry-academia interactions. The department of mechanical engineering boasts of an internal combustion engine research laboratory sponsored by Kirloskar Oil Engines Ltd (KOIL). It has modern equipment and software worth `1crore, which is used for research and development of internal combustion engines. KOIL experts provide technical know-how.

Bajaj Auto Ltd has committed support of Rs. 4.50 crore for a laboratory-complex in the mechanical engineering department where state-of-the-art laboratories will be set up.

Premier Ltd has donated a sum of Rs. 2 crore for revamping the workshop that now houses modern numerically controlled (by computers and not manually) machines. The knowlege gained by students while working on the machines is actually used by the industry.

Emerson Engineering Export Centre, Pune, has sponsored an industrial automation lab in the department of instrumentation and control by donating equipment and machinery worth Rs. 1.25 crore. A steam technology laboratory has been established with the support of Forbes Marshall, which donated a modern packaged boiler and equipment useful for experimentation and research in the area of steam technology.

COEP students and faculty have also been involved in industry projects at Pune’s Hinjewadi Infotech Park. BTech students under the supervision of Dr Jibi Abraham have worked with IBM on cloud computing. Dr Abraham, and Rajani Moona from COEP and Dr PK Sinha and Gaur Sundar from the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) are working on efficient selection of cryptographic algorithm for securing health data based on various parameters.

Prof Sahsrabudhe, director, says the students interned with about 193 industries in 2012-13. These include ThyssenKrupp India Ltd, Pimpri; Bajaj Aurangabad, L&T Pvt Ltd, Ashok Leyland, Eaton Technologies, Credit Suisse, Bentley Systems, Forbes Marshall, Siemens, Honeywell Automation, Mahindra & Mahindra, JSW Steel Limited, NCL, Pune; Tata Motors Ltd, Bharat Forge Pvt Ltd, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, JCB Manufacturing Co, Sandvik Asia, Thermax, Fiat India Ltd, Cummins India, Garware Polyster Ltd, Mercedes Benz, Mather And Platt Pumps Ltd, Bosch Ltd, Alfa Laval, etc.

Interestingly, some of the internships were converted to employment offers. “Seven students got offers from Barclay’s Technology, three from Texas Instruments, two from Credit Suisse, one from Eaton Technology and one from VM,” adds Prof Sahasrabudhe .

Apoorva Uday Nayak, a BTech (computer) student, says she enjoyed working on a project with AlgoAnalytics Financial Consultancy, which works in the area of algorithmic and quantitative trading and equity research. “Our main point of contact from the industry was Rohit Walimbe, quantitative analyst with the company. When we started off, we were not very familiar with the finance domain. But his timely inputs helped generate an interest in this field. Also, he had chalked out a definite plan for us which ensured that we never went off track. He used to reply promptly to our queries, but at the same time he used to give us just the hints and never the entire solution. This ensured that we went back and did our own research which in turn helped us understand our project very well,” she adds.

The institute has filed for as many as 37 patents out of which seven have been obtained - one by the department of civil engineering, one by mechanical engineering, two for electronics and communication engineering, one for instrumentation and control engineering, and two for metallurgy and material science.

Where the faculty is concerned, members have to plan training sessions aimed at educating industry personnel on a theoretical base and analysis of practical situations encountered by them in the day-to-day working. “Most of the the courses are customised to the needs of industry and contents are designed through mutual discussions,” says Prof D W Pande, dean, research and development and professor of mechanical engineering.

Since consultancy projects earn revenues for the institute, about 160 such assignments during 2012-13 fetched internal revenues of Rs. 286.89 lakh as consultancy fee, says Prof Sahasrabudhe. Clients have included government organisations such as the Public Works Department, municipal corporations, divisional ­commissioner, Pune, and so on. Projects for industries include ­scrutiny of soil investigation report for the proposed Trump Tower in Yerwada, Pune; environmental salt spray corrosion behaviour of coated steel work order from Tata BlueScope Steel Ltd, etc.

“As many as 15 labs have been set up in nine departments through sponsorship of 18 industry-partners donating funds, equipment and machinery worth Rs. 82.88 crore,” says Sahasrabudhe.

Director’s Cut,Anil D sahasrabudhe

The benefits we gain from industry-academia interactions are immense. There is presence of industry in every activity carried out in the institute - be it designing of the curricula, methods of assessment of the students, offering projects and internships to the students, placements, construction work to be undertaken on campus or planning of finance and budget of the institute. The institute is proud of the overwhelming support it gets from the industry

What the faculty has to say

Where the faculty is concerned, members have to plan training sessions aimed at educating industry personnel on theoretical base and analysis of practical situations encountered by them in day-to-day working. Most of the courses are customised to the needs of industry and contents are designed through mutual discussions

Prof D W Pande Dean, research and development and professor of mechanical engineering

Hear it from the students

I enjoyed working on a project with AlgoAnalytics Financial Consultancy, which works in the area of ­algorithmic and quantitative trading and equity research. When we ­started off, we were not very ­familiar with the finance domain. But the industry coordinator’s inputs helped generate an interest in this field. Also, he had chalked out a definite plan for us which ensured that we never went off track. He used to reply promptly to our queries so we were never stuck on anything for a long time. But at the same time he used to give us only hints and never the entire ­solution.

Apoorva Uday Nayak BTech, computers

Industry inputs

I liked the way the students of BTech - computer science, Megha Arun Ugalmugale, Apoorva Uday Nayak and Vishwanjali Gaikwad took interest in the project. They were definitely not interested in completing the project just for the sake of it. They picked up the ­concepts very well. I have also ­recommended Aniruddha to take up new project work with COEP group for this year too. They should make an effort to keep up the good work. Keep it up!

Rohit Walimbe quantitative analyst AlgoAnalytics Financial Consultancy