The Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India launched the “DBT-Pan IIT Centre for Bioenergy”, a virtual Centre spread across 5 Indian Institutes of Technology; Bombay, Kharagpur, Guwahati, Jodhpur, and Roorkee and coordinated by IIT Bombay signing a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) on September 3, 2015.
The first virtual centre for collaborative research will focus on the thematic areas of research in advance bio-fuel technologies.
The collaboration initiated in January 2015 and engaged a research team from the five participating institutes consisting of 32 investigators who have been working on bio-energy and will jointly undertake research activities in the following thematic areas: Cyanobacterial Biofuels, Biofuels from micro-algae, Ligno-cellulosic biomass to Biofuels and Techno-economic and Life Cycle Analysis.
Though the first virtual centre, it is the fourth centre in Bio-energy research set up by DBT in addition to the DBT-IOC Centre for Advanced Bioenergy Faridabad, DBT-ICT Centre for Energy Biosciences, Mumbai and DBT-ICGEB Centre for Advanced Bioenergy, New Delhi. This is also the largest among the four Bioenergy Centers in terms of investigator participation.
The Centre also aims to develop a mutually beneficial relationship with the bio-energy industry in India.
Memorandum of Agreement was signed between DBT and the participating 5 IITs on Sep 3, 2015 in presence of Prof. K VijayRaghavan, Secretary DBT. The meeting was attended by Dr.RenuSwarup (Senior Advisor, DBT), Prof. Devang Khakhar (Director, IIT Bombay), Prof. Pradipta Banerji (Director, IITRoorkee), Prof.Gautam Biswas ( Director, IIT Guwahati), Dr.Sangita Kasture (Joint Director, DBT), Prof.Pramod Wangikar (Coordinator of the Centre, IIT Bombay), Prof.V.Narayanan (IIT Jodhpur) and Prof. Saikat Chakraborty (IIT Kharagpur).
The main objective of this centre is to develop advanced technologies in the area of biofuels, paving the way for a sustainable solution to the energy crisis.