Team Aqua, comprising Sachin Dwivedi and Shivam Mishra — final year mechanical engineering students of the Army Institute of Technology (AIT, estb.1994) — bagged the Platinum prize of Rs.10 lakh for its revolutionary ‘vertical axis water turbine’ at KPIT Sparkle 2019, a design and innovation talent contest open to engineering and science students countrywide. The grand finale of KPIT Sparkle was staged in Pune on February 23-24.
This national competition based on the theme ‘Energy and Mobility for the Future’ organised by the Pune-based KPIT Technologies Ltd in association with the Pimpri Chinchwad College of Engineering and Centre for Innovation Incubation & Entrepreneurship (CIIE) of IIM-Ahmedabad among other incubation centres, attracted 2,200 teams representing 1,100 science and engineering colleges including 42 IITs and NITs. Of them, 30 teams made it to the grand finale at the Akurdi campus of the Pimpri-Chinchwad College where the products and innovations of finalists were evaluated by a high-powered jury comprising eminent scientists, industrialists and academics.
Scoring over conventional water turbines, Team Aqua’s innovation with a unique blade design was adjudged winner of the Platinum prize. Equipped with gimbal mechanism, the blades tilt automatically to increase the height of the turbine which converts the kinetic and potential energy of water to generate electricity for small and large power plants.
“We had ideated the project two years ago as a response to soaring demand for electric power. Using data-based calculations and simulations, we validated our idea and developed a 3D printed prototype. Our deadline for developing the final prototype for KPIT Sparkle was under three months. We owe immense gratitude to our mentor Prof. R.S. Verma for his constant support and guidance,” says Shivam.
Currently, this duo is focused on preparing for their final year examination in June. “After completing our degree programme, we plan to invest the prize money into further development and improvement of our product based on recommendations of the KPIT Sparkle jury,” says Sachin.
Paromita Sengupta (Bangalore)