UPES all set to de­velop pay­load pro­to­type for C-130J Su­per Hercules


Univer­sity of Petroleum and En­ergy Stud­ies (UPES) is de­vel­op­ing a pay­load pro­to­type for mil­i­tary air­craft C-130J Su­per Hercules with the help of a re­search grant of $40,000 from Lock­heed Martin. The pay­load will be used to­wards im­proved hu­man­i­tar­ian aid sup­port, disas­ter re­lief op­er­a­tions, med­i­cal evac­u­a­tion and en­vi­ron­men­tal/weather mis­sions.

The pay­load be­ing de­vel­oped by UPES will help in en­sur­ing prompt re­sponse dur­ing ex­treme sit­u­a­tions and sav­ing ini­tial re­sponse time which is usu­ally spent in set­ting up work­ing head­quar­ters from where re­lief teams can op­er­ate in case of a disas­ter oc­cur­rence.

Speak­ing about the de­vel­op­ment, Ut­pal Ghosh, CEO & Pres­i­dent, UPES, said, “We are ex­tremely proud of this achieve­ment by our stu­dents, sup­ported by our fac­ulty mem­bers. This is a fit­ting tes­ti­mony of the tech­ni­cal com­pe­ten­cies de­vel­oped by the stu­dents dur­ing the course of their stud­ies, our fo­cus on R&D and in­dus­try-academia in­ter­face”.

Cur­rently, in re­lief op­er­a­tions dur­ing disas­ter sit­u­a­tions fa­cil­i­ties like wa­ter pu­rifi­ca­tion sys­tem, san­i­ta­tion fa­cil­i­ties, elec­tric­ity and pow­er­house, etc., are set up sep­a­rately, which eats up sig­nif­i­cant amount of cru­cial ‘golden hours,’ i.e. first 72 hours af­ter a disas­ter oc­cur­rence. The pay­load be­ing de­vel­oped by UPES team will help in sav­ing con­sid­er­able set-up time when ev­ery sec­ond counts.

Dr Ka­mal Bansal, Dean, Col­lege of Engi­neer­ing Stud­ies (CoES) at UPES ex­plains, “In disas­ter sit­u­a­tions and dur­ing re­lief op­er­a­tions a lot of ini­tial re­sponse time is spent in set­ting up work­ing head­quar­ters from where re­lief teams can op­er­ate. Our win­ning pay­load struc­ture and its in­ter­nal ar­chi­tec­ture has been de­vel­oped to re­duce ini­tial re­sponse time as much as pos­si­ble, tech­no­log­i­cally. We aim to fin­ish this project by next year and look for­ward to de­vel­op­ing ideal head­quar­ters for large-scale re­lief op­er­a­tions”.

The team de­vel­op­ing the pro­to­type is backed by tech­nol­ogy giants Lock­heed Martin, Tata Ad­vanced Sys­tems, DRDO, IAF of­fi­cials and NDRF. This is also be­ing de­vel­oped keep­ing in mind the in-depth un­der­stand­ing of ground-zero re­al­i­ties to make it suit­able for sce­nar­ios like air­drop and long stor­age pe­riod.

Ad­di­tion­ally, UPES stu­dents have been part of In­dian and global mis­sions and com­pe­ti­tions in the past. Smiti Maini, a stu­dent of 2006-10 aero­space engi­neer­ing batch at UPES, was part of mis­sion con­trol team for the launch of In­dia’s Mars Or­biter Mis­sion (MOM) in Novem­ber 2013 and Mars Or­bit In­ser­tion in Septem­ber 2014. She worked on space­craft con­trol sys­tems de­sign, anal­y­sis and sim­u­la­tion, and also de­signed the thruster fail­ure de­tec­tion, iso­la­tion and re­con­fig­u­ra­tion (TFDIR) for au­ton­o­mous func­tion­ing of the space­craft.

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