Hindustan Times (Delhi)
From IIT: Cleaning toxic water for rivers, faster typhoid diagnosis
TECH THAT HELPS Scholars develop material that absorbs effluents as they flow through pipes and device that helps in early and cheaper detection of typhoid
NEW DELHI: A group of scholars from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi have developed a material that can easily absorb toxic elements and allow only treated water to be discharged into rivers.
The innovation, that makes use of cheap nano material readily available in markets, comes at a time when the government has been coming up with new ways and methods to clean the water bodies of Delhi, especially the Yamuna.
The technology envisions the special material being coated with starch and other chemicals, and then used inside the pipes of factories that release effluents or being placed as a gauge at the pipe’s openings to soak up the effluents as they flow.
“Starch as you know is very cheap and a very small amount of it has been used to make this material. As per the experiment conducted, this material absorbs 95 percent of toxic metals and will help in saving a lot of the aquatic life,” said Arabinda Baruah, research scholar from department of chemistry IIT-Delhi.
According to the research scholars, this would be a very useful in polymer, textile and the leather factories.
This project will be on display on April 18 during the IIT-Open House — an annual event that showcases innovative projects.
The other project created by IIT-Delhi students is something called the “immuno magnetic cell capture” that is expected to help the healthcare sector, making diagnosis of typhoid faster and cheaper.
At present, it takes 72 hours to determine whether a person is suffering from typhoid. The new device, however, will help detect possible typhoid in just six hours.
“Bacterial infections like cholera and diarrhoeal diseases are major cause of death due to lack of clean water and sanitation. Existing methods do not make possible diagnosis easy. Our device will detect infection early and reduce cost,” said Ravikrishnan Elangovan, assistant professor from the department of bio-chemical engineering and biotechnology.
Developed with the help of two other professors from different department and some PhD scholars, the portable immuno magnetic cell capture device will detect infection by testing stool and blood.
“Diagnosis now cost `500. After our device is used, it will not cost more than `200. The device will work on both battery and electricity,” said Vivekanandan Perumal, assistant professor of school of biological sciences.
This device has already been patented and the ones who have innovated have plans to be take it to a commercial level.
The Open House will also showcase a project by Virendra Kumar Sharma, who makes bells, pens, perfume bottles from glass blowing.
“Normally laboratory instruments are made from glass blowing due to high cost of the glasses. The other things I have learnt over the years,” said Sharma, who has been working at IIT-D for over 30 years now.