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    Breaking the Barriers Between Academia & Industry

    In the adamant tech education industry, bailing to industry champs every year to the industry. It has become mandatory to be as apt tech savvy as possible. Abreast to these skills with the right amount of knowledge of the technical tools is the need of the hour. Future professionals and present students need to hand on experience on these tools & technology, which has made easy with some of our industry experts which are providing aid in academia in the meantime while running their successful company in their segments.

    Test & Measurements is one of the segment which is heavily interested in training the future professionals and in the view of same, our ELE Times correspondent & Sub Editor Sheeba Chauhan had quite an elucidative talk with Madhukar Tripathi, Associate Director, Optical Business & Marketing, Anritsu; Ramesh Navalagi, Senior Manager –Sales (ICR & ADT), T&M, Rohde & Schwarz India; and Bhartendu Mishra, General Manager of sales for India, Arrow Electronics’.

    Excerpt:

    ELE Times: What are the recent tools, programs and activities to help increase technical engineering capabilities In India?

    Madhukar Tripathi, Associate Director, Optical Business & Marketing, Anritsu

    Madhukar Tripathi, Associate Director, Optical Business & Marketing, Anritsu

    Anritsu is offering a variety of T&M tools and solutions to the academic institutions. These T&M tools are state of art latest technology products and making engineers ready for the industry skill requirements. Anritsu training program, workshop for academic helps to increase technical engineering capabilities of the students in India. We have many technology fundamental posters related to latest in technologies and applications which are liked by academic. Anritsu’s instruments operational manual are available on website and all instruments have online help for any issues and learning. This also helps engineers to learn technology, T&M usage faster and solve problems faced during measurements.

    Ramesh Navalagi, Senior Manager –Sales (ICR & ADT), T&M, Rohde & Schwarz India-

    Ramesh Navalagi, Senior Manager –Sales (ICR & ADT), T&M, Rohde & Schwarz India-

    Given the increasing importance of technology in our modern economic system, digitization, and the increased globalization of engineering innovations, enhancement of engineering capability became a focus area for the central government, state governments as well as the industry of India.

    The government initiatives like Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY),  AICTE-IDEA Labs, Centre of Excellence initiative by several State governments facilitate technical institutes to enhance teaching, training, and research capabilities. Make in India and Startup India initiatives for achieving self-reliance in the technology domain encourage research in the new technology fields.

    Tech industry leaders also facilitate engineering capacity building. For example, Rohde & Schwarz India (RSINDIA), as a part of its CSR activities, has been actively supporting the cause of higher technical education through various sponsorships and participation in social events. We helped a few selected educational institutes to upgrade the technical lab infrastructure so that the training imparted to the students is in line with the demands of the industry. Rohde & Schwarz sponsor several engineering capacity-building programs for students.

    ELE Times:  What are the current focus areas for T&M companies for academia?

    Madhukar Tripathi, Associate Director, Optical Business & Marketing, Anritsu

    Academics T&M requirement can be divided in two parts.

    • Regular /Curriculum Labs (ii) Advance/ Research Labs.

    Key objective of regular lab is meet approval authorities such as AICTE norms and expose student to basic measurement techniques- methods.

    Regular labs need basic test instrument which are low frequency, low bandwidth such as Oscilloscope, Function Generator, Signal Generator, Power Supplies, Multimeters. These labs also have training kits to teach basic engineering concepts. These instruments are purchased in big quantity.

    While advance labs need T&M primarily focusing research & project work. These labs need higher frequency, higher bandwidth, high channels, more interfaces, features etc as per research- project requirement T&M.

    T&M companies are ready with T&M solutions to meets todays and tomorrow’s test requirement. Many T&M are offering higher bandwidth to understand and work for new technologies such as 5G & 6G. Now a days most T&M have touch screen, easy GUI & online help menu that makes easy and better use of T&M. Due to these features T&M are cost effective, faster learning curve & user friendly to academia.

    Most institutes focus on basic lab establishment first and then go for higher version of Test instruments. Many instruments offer future upgradable path to offer cost effective T&M and meet limited budget requirements.

    Anritsu have partnered with many companies to provide complete solution for educational labs -one key focus product in this area is VNA- VNA is used in Antenna characterization and material measurements.

    Ramesh Navalagi, Senior Manager –Sales (ICR & ADT), T&M, Rohde & Schwarz India-

    Reputed T&M companies worldwide encourage industry-academia collaborative programs like joint research through the Centre of Excellence (CoE) initiative, training, internship, and arrangement of project-specific test equipment. Rohde & Schwarz continues to develop its partnerships with universities worldwide. We ensure that the next generation of engineers have the support and state-of-the-art instruments they require to optimize the present and shape the future.

    Currently, our focus areas for industry-academia collaboration include high-speed Component research, 5G, IoT & Quantum technologies. We inspire students to achieve optimal results with the best available instruments. This brings considerable benefits to the educational institutions and the students involved.

    In addition to providing collaborative support, Rohde & Schwarz is keeping up-to-date with the specific needs and peculiarities of the educational market. With one of them being budgetary restrictions, the company proactively offers special terms and discounts for the customers in the educational market.

    ELE Times: What are the other services provided by your company once the equipment is delivered?

    Madhukar Tripathi, Associate Director, Optical Business & Marketing, Anritsu

    Anritsu focus towards customers satisfaction and work very closely with academic institutions. Once purchased instrument is delivered, we provider operational and maintenance training to users. Then after some time we again provide additional training about usage and solving issues faced by any users. We also update users about firmware updates from time to time which enables them to use latest features in supplied instrument. Anritsu has established ISO17025 Certified Calibration Lab for annual calibrations and servicing of the instruments.

    Ramesh Navalagi, Senior Manager –Sales (ICR & ADT), T&M, Rohde & Schwarz India-

    Besides the test and measurement equipment portfolio, Rohde & Schwarz also has a NABL accredited calibration and repair center in India. This center offers local repair and calibration services as per global standards ensuring low-cost ownership to customers. We also offer a long-term loaner option of high-end equipment for the students and faculty members to support the completion of strategic projects.

    Rohde & Schwarz provides literature, offers expert guest lectures, as well as seminars and training courses for academics and students. We often sponsor student competitions with test equipment and awards.

    ELE Times: List few of the recent T&M equipment used in the academic sector.

    Madhukar Tripathi, Associate Director, Optical Business & Marketing, Anritsu

    Spectrum Master (Spectrum Analyzers), VNA Master  -Vector Network Analyzers (VNA), Signal Generators and Power Meters, Optical Spectrum Analyzer (OSA), OTDR, Optical Power Meter and Light Source are most popular Test & Measurement instruments supplied to academic sectors by Anritsu. These instruments are used by various labs such as Electronics & Communication Engineering Lab, Material Research Lab, Antenna Characterization, RF & MW Lab, Digital Electronics lab, Optical Fiber Communication Lab & Physics Lab.

    Ramesh Navalagi, Senior Manager –Sales (ICR & ADT), T&M, Rohde & Schwarz India-

    Our R&S ESSENTIAL Instruments, a must-have for every Electronics engineer bench, are the fast-selling range in academia. Moreover, Spectrum Analyzer (R&S FSW/ R&S FSVA) and Signal Generator (R&S SMW200A/ R&S SMBV100B) also find wide use in the latest academic research areas, including 5G, Millimeter-wave, and RF components development. With the increasing demand for wireless communication, the Radio Communication tester (R&S CMW500), another flagship product of R&S, is gaining higher acceptance in the education sector. With the upgrade of technical infrastructure, we are also seeing the traction of our EMI/ EMC test equipment in educational Institutes.

    In lieu of the same, Arrow electronics, one of the major player of the niche also wants to shed some light on the recent tools, programs and activities that can help engineering capabilities in India.

    Bhartendu Mishra, General Manager of sales for India, Arrow Electronics’

    Bhartendu Mishra, General Manager of sales for India, Arrow Electronics

    New technologies, new materials, new ideas and new electronics have the power to make life better – not just faster and easier, but smarter and more inspired. That’s why everyone at Arrow – our engineers, analysts, coordinators, supply chain managers, solution architects and sales specialists –works toward a common goal: to help our customers develop technology that improves the world for everybody. To make technology more accessible, easier to understand and better to use. We strive to make best-in-class design tools, resources, and engineering expertise as accessible as possible to innovators and engineers as they create, make and manage technology today for tomorrow.

    As an example of empowering local innovators and engineers with access to critical technology resources and expertise, Arrow has established a network of open labs in major technology and innovation hubs around the world, including China, India, Israel, and the U.S.

    A Center of Excellence for Internet of Things – IoT Open Lab

    Advancements of IoT and smart sensing technologies are shaping the way we live, do business and interact with each other and the environment.  Collaborating with the Software Technology Parks of India (STPI), we established the IoT Open Lab in Bangalore.  The lab has been officially operational since September 2020.  Home – IoT Open Lab (stpi.in)

    The IoT Open Lab acts as an experimental ecosystem where customers and partners can develop ideas, unleash creativity and tap directly into Arrow’s diverse, world-class resources: tools, engineers and problem-solvers who understand the landscape and can help in all areas from design to manufacturing, supply chain and accelerating time to market.

    Working with a collection of industry associations, technology suppliers, academic institutions, and venture capital firms, STPI and Arrow are building a robust engineering support infrastructure and ecosystem that enable startups and entrepreneurs in India to bring IoT and sensory solutions to market quickly and cost effectively.

    The lab is equipped with state-of-the-art engineering equipment and testing modules.  Experienced vertical segment experts and engineers with expertise in areas of embedded computing, sensing, connectivity and system integration are on site to provide professional advices to users.  With a showcase of a wide range of IoT solutions and applications, the lab also serves as IoT an experience center for entrepreneurs and startups to experience the best-of-breed IoT and sensing technologies.  Local startups and emerging tech companies can leverage the OpenLab as a resource and enablement center to gain access not just hardware equipment but also mentorship by industry experts.

    Arrow partners with hundreds of electronics manufacturers and suppliers from across the globe to offer a diverse and powerful range of products and offerings.  Product experts from Arrow’s supplier community and Arrow engineers join force to conduct a series of technical seminars at Open Lab on a regular basis.

    Arrow has supported the Open Challenge Program 3.0 (OCP 3.0) launched by STPI and under this program we have onboarded 3 new startup companies.  A new round of onbaroding program for 2022 is expected to kick off soon.

    Examples of local startups which have benefited from Arrow’s engineering support

    • Refillbot, a startup specialized in providing “WaterBot Online Solutions” (https://refillbot.in/).  This startup has taken part in an incubation program at IoT Open lab Bengaluru, set up jointly by Arrow Electronics and STPI.  The startup has launched a project to build a robust remote monitoring solution which can work with or without internet (2G GSM based signal), monitors 24/7 – 365 days plant operations, availability, consumption and water quality across 100 Villages in Karnataka. The startup has been able to redesign the remote monitoring system in collaboration and consultation with Arrow for component selection, wireless system design, and as well testing and verification of the board using IoT open lab equipments.   Arrow and STPI helped Refillbot overcome technical challenges to execute the entire project and made it a successful deployment and go-live across 100 villages in Karnataka within a span of 4 months.
    • Virtual Forest, ( https://virtualforest.in/ ), a tech company making EV and Energy Efficient Devices.  We have collaborated with our supplier Infineon and provided engineering support to help them overcome technical challenges with designing with the motor control-based applications for energy efficient devices.

    Sheeba Chauhan | Sub Editor | ELE Times

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