The illuminating webinar on “Inspire the Inspired: Excellent Research Opportunity in SRM University – AP” was designed to describe the exciting research opportunities that are available at SRM University-AP, Andhra Pradesh. Prof. V.S. Rao, Vice-Chancellor, addressed the participants of the webinar with the opening remarks. He extended a warm welcome to the partakers, which was over 130. This impromptu webinar was organized to motivate the prospective Ph.D. students to join SRM AP for an illustrious career. Prof. V.S. Rao said, “SRM AP is pursuing the path of excellence by emphasizing research both in undergraduate (UG) and postgraduate (PG) level which played a crucial role in achieving the university’s aspiration to become an academy of distinction.” He highlighted that right from its inception, the University decided to recruit well-accomplished research-oriented faculty who have acquired a Ph.D. from reputed institutes or/and have international exposure. In its nascent stage, the faculty of SRM AP have published more than 200 papers in well-reputed journals with high Impact Factors.” Prof. V.S. Rao also applauded the incredible accomplishment of the faculty in getting 24 projects with a total outlay of Rs.12 crores from the Government of India Scientific Funding agencies in a short span. He added, “Committed, dedicated faculty working have worked relentlessly in the pursuit of excellence under the guidance of Prof. D. Narayana Rao, Pro Vice-Chancellor, whose leadership has steered their efforts in the best direction.”
Prof. V.S. Rao concluded by mentioning that in India, research has taken a backseat as our nation is far behind other countries in producing Ph.D. students. “Now the time has come for higher education institutes to participate in Research and Development (R&D) by encouraging Ph.D. students. It is a matter of pride that at SRM AP, the faculty have involved undergraduate (UG) students in their research pursuits and publications.”, divulged Prof. V.S. Rao.
Prof. D. Narayana Rao asserted, “SRM AP provides exciting and challenging research opportunities that are of national importance and having social applications”. He welcomed all the participants of the webinar by explaining that the purpose of the webinar was to explicate the type of exciting research in frontline and emerging areas of science and technology being carried out at SRM AP. Through the webinar, he desired to motivate the students to join the Ph.D. programs at SRM AP by assuring them of an enviable career. He substantiated his statement by stating that all the faculty at SRM AP have obtained their Ph.D. from reputed institutes in India and abroad.
Prof. D. Narayana Rao initiated his presentation by displaying the model plan of SRM AP that is to be constructed in the next 5-10 years to explain the conducive environment offered at the university for creative thinking. Inaugurated on 15 July 2017, within 3 years, expert faculty with brilliant accomplishments and national and international characteristics have been associated with SRM AP. Prof. D. Narayana Rao described and explained various laboratories, experimental facilities, and world-class infrastructure of the university.
Prof. D. Narayana Rao informed the attendees of the webinar regarding the 132 faculty members, cross-cultural students, periodic research review meetings, and Active Learning centers at SRM AP which facilitates discussion among scholars and formation of innovative ideas. He added, “It is of honour and pride for our university to have INSPIRE faculty and students who have published journal papers having Impact Factor of more than 52. It is of prestige and privilege for any university to reach this stage within 3 years of its inception. We also involve UG students in research and one of them has developed Face Shield and patented the same.”
Prof. D. Narayana Rao enlightened about the collaborations of SRM AP with Indian Nanoelectronics User Program- The Indian Institute of Science (INUP-IISc), which would enable students to work at such centers, interact with faculty members of IISc, and expand their horizons of thinking and carrying out research. Prof. D. Narayana Rao declared that SRM AP has collaborated with National Atmospheric Research Laboratory (NARL) of Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) in emerging areas of studies which are of paramount importance. He urged, “The students can explore these facilities and use the wisdom of many of the eminent personalities who would direct and guide students to conduct contemporary research.”
Prof. D. Narayana Rao notified the participants about the importance of Computational Materials. He said, “Previously, designing and developing materials used to take a decade. Now with computational materials, the same can be achieved in reduced time. SRM AP organized a conference with The Asian Consortium on Computational Materials Science (ACCMS) on 5th-6th February 2020. (For details, visit: https://srmap.edu.in/conferences/third-international-conference/)”. Prof. D. Narayana Rao further informed, “SRM AP has established centers in collaboration with Amara Raja Batteries to develop Lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries. Dr. G. S. Vinod Kumar, Associate Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, has been working with Tanishq-Titan to develop lightweight jewellery using foam gold, which has also been filed for patenting. Apart from this, it is of extreme privilege that SRM AP is work in partnership with the Indian Railways to develop hydrogen infused trains”
Prof. D. Narayana Rao concluded by saying that SRM AP provides challenging and exciting research opportunities that cater to the industrial requirements. He motivated the prospective Ph.D. students to join SRM AP to develop vision, expertise, and commitment that would enable them to become leaders in their chosen areas of science and technology.
Further, the webinar steered students to seven breakout rooms where Dr. Goutam Kumar Dalapati represented Physical Science, Dr. Nimai Mishra spoke for Chemical Science, Prof. V. Kannan embodied Mathematics, Dr. Manjunatha Thondamal represented Biological Science, Dr. Jatindra Kumar Dash exemplified Computer Science and Engineering, Dr. Ramesh Vaddi spoke about Electrical and Electronics Engineering and Electronics and Communication Engineering, and Dr. G. S. Vinod Kumar gave a detailed presentation of the research activities of the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Faculty members shared details of SRM AP research programmes through presentations in each breakout room, and the participants interacted with them to discuss various plausible research areas.