When Alan Turing, the father of theoretical computer science and artificial intelligence, designed the bombe for the Turing machine, the world was not prepared to accept such a leaping advancement in technology that became the model of a general purpose computer. Technologies have been replacing manual work day by day. When wheels were invented back during 6500 BC, the concept of transportation of man and materials boomed. Since then, the developments witnessed in that area were immense.
Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd., organized a national event, ‘Spark the Rise’, with the aim of seeing “Make in India,” the best in the world. Through this event, the younger generation brains were inspired to innovate and create more, so that the world sits up and take notice. And the good news is that team ‘Pragyaan’ from the Department of Robotics and Automation Engineering with students, Sanath Kumar, Pragadheesh Krishna of final year and Bharat of the second year of PSG College of Technology has been selected for the finals of Mahindra’s Driverless Car Challenge, a part of the main event.
When interviewed with Bharat, one of the team members, it was understood that his team, “Pragyaan” was the only team to be selected from the South Zone for the final rounds and is one of the 12 teams from an initial 259 participants. It was also surprisingly revealed that most of the participants were research scholars or professors of various colleges and the student population was seemingly lower.
Initially, when the senior students of the team came to know about the event and approached the Department’s head, Dr. B. Vinoth, he gave full guidance for the students to achieve the target. Faculty members of the department, Dr. Sundaram, Dr. K. S. Sujatha and Dr. K. Natarajan (Former HOD, Department of Mechanical Engineering) were involved in guiding the students in the process. The funding is also provided by the department.
As a first step, an Approach Note was sent to the organizing committee that included the design abstract of the car. After being selected for the next stage, the team was asked to demonstrate a prototype in Bangalore.
The team is currently preparing for the next level, which is the implementation of automation in the car. The concept of machine learning will be established under careful research and analysis. However, the team has to undergo rigorous tests to meet the standards and regulations to make it fit on our roads.
The car which is still to be integrated with more features was displayed at the International Conference on Advancements in Automation, Robotics and Sensing (ICAARS) which was held in the last week of June at the college. When asked about the conference, Bharat told that being one of the budding departments, the conference has helped to gain popularity for both; the departments as well the facilities available in the college. “More exposure will help us to build a strong establishment as the field of Robotics and Automation is more promising for a better future”, Bharat said, when asked about his view on the matter.
Team Bridge congratulates ‘Team Pragyaan’ for standing out from the crowd and wishes all the best for the upcoming stages.