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Researchers at the International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT) in Hyderabad have unveiled a working prototype of a flexible drone that changes its shape to fit the size of the package to be lifted. Suraj Bonagiri, a researcher from the Robotics Research Centre in his research on the mechanism behind a reconfigurable quadcopter, highlighted limitations of existing delivery drones and proposed a novel design.
“Current design of such drones focuses only on the weight of parcels to be lifted ignoring their size. Packages however come in various sizes and are an important parameter to be factored in,” said the 24-year-old robotics researcher.
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According to him, since drones are typically designed to carry specific payloads, forcibly fitting and lifting inappropriate payloads will lead to instability, loss inefficiency, and even compromise on safety. Unlike other rigid drones, Suraj’s patent-pending design which he calls ‘Elasticopter’ is a dynamic one. Thanks to a flexible chassis and a novel mechanism that expands or collapses, it can grip and match the shape of the parcel to be lifted.
With this method of attachment to cargo, the mass is always centered and results in optimal battery performance. It also ranks high on the stability front due to the unique positioning of the propellers. Explaining how typically airflow from propellers hits the payload causing turbulence mid-air, Suraj pointed out that in this design, there is zero prop wash interference with the payload no matter its size.
Under the guidance of Professors Spandan Roy and Madhava Krishna, Suraj set out to validate the superiority of his design via a series of simulations comparing current drones with the Elasticopter. “We found that in existing drones, even if they can lift and deliver packages of varying shapes, the battery life and flight time is short-lived because it’s not done in an optimal manner. And this is especially evident when there are large-scale delivery operations,” he says.
For Suraj who began his research journey into the world of drones first as an intern at RRC and then as an MS student, IIITH seemed a perfect choice. “I’ve always wanted to start up. And the reason I chose to pursue my Masters’s here is that the campus not only houses incubators but there’s the active commercialization of research through Product Labs. With appropriate advice from the professors here and access to the resources and tools, I had a rough idea of spinning my thesis into an entrepreneurial venture.”
Professor Krishna corroborates Suraj’s passion by describing him as “an extraordinary and rare student who wanted to innovate at the level of a novel mechanism in flying vehicles.”
Creating A Product
Suraj approached Product Labs with his idea where he was guided to enroll in the Technology Product Entrepreneurship (TPE) course. “For us, this is a textbook case of taking research to the market. And also something that we’ve always wanted to see happen, that is, our students taking their research forward to build products leading to startups. It’s exciting to see some deep research taking shape,” says Prakash Yalla who heads Product Labs.
Suraj extensively leveraged the Maker’s Lab and is now pre-incubated at Product Labs. The initial prototype he built won him a productization grant of Rs. 8 lakhs from the institute. Fabrication of the second prototype design using high-quality materials is currently underway and a commercial model is expected to go public by the end of the year. “Materials movement is a key use case for this drone design,” says Ramesh Loganathan, Prof. Co-Innovation who heads Outreach at IIITH. According to him, it will be highly useful in warehouses, on manufacturing floors, e-commerce supply chain operations, medicine delivery, and such where there are packages of different sizes and frequent movement is needed.
While the Elasticopter scores over other delivery drones from minimal storage space it occupies, to the time taken to attach and detach itself to parcels, the researchers envision its relevance and applicability to other universal drone applications too. “I’d like to think of it as a multi-purpose drone. From a large agricultural spray tank for aerial spraying of fertilizers and pesticides to a megaphone for disseminating public information about the Covid-19 vaccination program or a lockdown situation, the sky is the limit in its application”, added Suraj. (IANS/SP)
There will be no chief guest at the Republic Day parade this year also as the plan to host state heads of five Central Asian countries -- Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan -- seems to have been cancelled due to the Covid situation in India as well as in the respective nations. Though the Ministry of External Affairs is yet to confirm this officially.
If the guests arrive, then this would be the second time when India hosts a group of state heads as the chief guests on the Republic Day. In 2018, state heads of ASEAN countries graced the occasion with their presence. Apart from Kazakhstan, none of these countries' state heads had been invited as the chief guests on the Republic Day. In 2009, Kazakhstan's then president Nursultan Nazarbayev was the Chief Guest.
The Government of India is in no mood to take any risk to invite any foreign guest. Mitul Gajera / Unsplash
As per sources, due to the corona situation, the Government of India is in no mood to take any risk to invite any foreign guest, so the plan seems to have been cancelled. Last year, British Prime minister Boris Johnson was invited for the same, but later cancelled due to rising corona cases in the UK.
In the past, there have been occasions when the Republic Day ceremony was celebrated without any foreign guest. In 1966, there was no foreign chief guest in the Republic Day parade ceremony as the then Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri had passed away in Tashkent in January, and Indira Gandhi took oath as Prime Minister on January 24. (IANS/SP)
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A team of scientists from the Banaras Hindu University (BHU) have found a cure for those suffering from chronic wounds, particularly with diabetic foot ulcers. The team led by Prof Gopal Nath of the department of Microbiology, Institute of Medical Sciences, said that wounds that took months and years to heal, could now be cured in days or months. The findings of study have been published in the National Centre for Biotechnology Information, National Institutes of Health, US.
Prof Nath said that a wound is defined as a breach in the skin or body tissues due to injury. An acute wound is defined as a "recent break that is yet to progress through sequential stages of healing". The wounds where normal healing process is stalled due to underlying pathology (vascular and diabetes) or infection beyond three months is defined as chronic wound. While chronic wounds always get infected, the contaminated wounds are reasonably susceptible to infection.
A significant improvement could be achieved in the form of complete wound epithelization within a few weeks.Towfiqu barbhuiya / Unsplash
Infection with antibiotic-resistant bacteria and biofilm formation halt healing progress. These wounds cause significant psychological and physical morbidity. The traditional treatment strategies often succeed in healing wounds, he said adding that many wounds have been observed recalcitrant to them, leading to persistence and recurrent infections. Search for alternatives to antibiotics has now become a compulsion. Fortunately, bacteriophage therapy is a re-emerging solution to antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
Prof Nath's team carried out phage therapy of acute and chronic infected wounds in animals and clinical studies. It showed efficacy against Pseudomonas aeruginosa in a mice wound model. Furthermore, they evaluated the efficacy of phage cocktails in animal models' acute and chronic osteomyelitis caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. They also observed biofilm eradication from K wire in rabbits' wound infection model. Clinical trials of phage therapy initiated by the BHU have reported the efficacy of topical phage in healing chronic wounds in three prospective exploratory studies and no adverse events mimicking the results in vivo animal models.
Scientists have found a cure for those suffering from diabetic foot ulcers. Unsplash
A clinical study by Gupta demonstrated the significant role of bacteriophage therapy in the chronic wounds associated with antibiotic-resistant bacteria. The study employed a total of twenty patients with chronic non-healing ulcers for more than six weeks duration. A significant improvement could be achieved in the form of complete wound epithelization within a few weeks. Another study, employing 48 patients having a minimum of one eligible full-thickness wound that did not heal in six weeks with convention wound management, showed the promising result, and significant improvement was observed in the wound healing.
The study projected that specific phage therapy is equally effective regardless of the diabetic or non-diabetic status of the patient though the healing was relatively delayed in diabetic patients. Another successful study has shown encouraging results on healing process of infected acute traumatic wounds. The average number of days required for complete granulation of wounds and attaining sterility and healing was half compared to conventional therapy. (IANS/SP)
(Keywords : scientists, cure, chronic, wound, suffer, ulcer, diabetes, healing, pathology, health, infection, bacteria, study, patient, therapy, successful.)
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By Anna Melnikova
The Indian cricket lovers have been waiting for a ton from Virat Kohli for a long time, and he finally has made it. However, not in the batting as most fans expect, but in catching balls.
The second day of the 3rd Test in Capetown between local Proteas and the Men in Blue was rich for interesting occasions. Thus, South Africa was waiting for a good scoring result after stopping all Indian batters on the first day. Their opponents, however, have been looking for nice bowling not to lose the game just in the first innings. And while Bumrah added five wickets to his score, one of the dismissals should go to Virat Kohli. By the way, if you want more cricket news in India, we recommend subscribing to the specified site using the link.
Also Read : Acts of good sportsmanship
The legendary captain was great in batting but now can not score a ton for more than two years. But the three-digit result came from another side, where he is also quite successful. And while most of his catches came from opponents' misses, he proved he can be effective in the outfield parts of the pitch. According to experts, Kohli has a unique ability to be energetic on the pitch and still be concentrated for long shots by opponents, which rarely come in Test format.
Kohli has a unique ability to be energetic on the pitch. Unsplash
Even a legendary Gavaskar, who was the first Indian with such a result, praised the ability of the recent captain to catch. He admitted the ability to grab slipping balls, which are hard to cope with. Interestingly, Virat became only the sixth Indian to achieve a milestone in this component in the Test format. Kohli needed 99 games to find the needed number, although he is focused on making the 28th century first of all.
Another three-digit achievement can happen just today. He opened the 3rd day of the Test in Capetown along with Pujara and stayed alive at the moment of writing this article. If you are fond of sports betting, we recommend that you go to the rating of sports betting sites in India and choose a reliable bookmaker.
(Disclaimer: This is a sponsored article and includes some commercial links.)
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