29 January 2022 07:50:16 IST

Honeywell, IIT Dharwad to set up centre for clean energy

Source: IIT Dharwad official website

Honeywell Hometown Solutions India Foundation (HHSIF), the philanthropic arm of Honeywell, has established the Global Center of Excellence for Affordable and Clean Energy (GCoE-ACE) at IIT Dharwad to boost research in Affordable and Clean Energy (ACE). This multi-year project seeks to establish physical infrastructure, incubate technologies, and identify avenues for the adoption of clean energy solutions developed to improve the lives and livelihoods of rural communities.

This center will leverage rural areas within a 200 km radius of IIT Dharwad as a testbed for selected start-ups and innovators to impart skills required to develop and manage ACE technologies. The center will systematically identify various avenues for the widespread adoption of ACE to improve the lives and livelihoods of rural communities and create a socially and environmentally sustainable future for them.

Scientific social responsibility

“Honeywell’s partnership with IIT Dharwad seeks to find affordable and sustainable technology-driven solutions in clean energy for the betterment of our rural communities. This also dovetails with the Government’s goal of meeting 50 per centof the country’s energy requirement from renewables by 2030,” said Ashish Gaikwad, President, Honeywell India and Director, HHHSIF.

“At IIT Dharwad, we take our scientific social responsibility seriously. The partnership with Honeywell enables us to expand our work on SDG-7 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which focuses on affordable and clean energy as a means to create a multiplier effect, since energy is a key input in income and economic progress. It also enhances healthcare, education, transportation, communication facilities in remote regions, while minimising damage to the environment,” said Prof P Seshu, Director, IIT Dharwad.

Vision and mission

In the first phase, funding from HHSIF will be utilised to procure, install, and commission various equipment required for setting up the center to undertake R&D and fabrication. It will also be used to build the capacities of innovators through training and skill development.

HHSIF and IIT Dharwad will develop an open-source platform to build an interactive database of grassroots level energy-related challenges. The platform will also be used to solicit ideas to solve these problems through technology-driven solutions.

The center’s resources will be used to scrutinise and select problems from the database and take them through robust stages of the innovation cycle, including in-depth research, testing and prototyping, piloting and building channels for scale. The center will focus on incubating, designing and engineering affordable, energy-efficient, and renewable energy-powered products to enhance the life of rural communities.