Annual Report 1999-2000
Instrumentation Centres (RSICs)
Regional Sophisticated Instrumentation Centres
(RSICs) are located at IIT, Chennai; IIT, Mumbai; Bose Institute,
Calcutta; CDRI, Lucknow; Punjab University, Chandigarh; NEHU,
Shillong; Nagpur University, Nagpur; and Sophisticated Instrumentation
Facilities (SIFs) at IISc, Bangalore; AIIMS, New Delhi; Guwahati
University, Guwahati. The centres provide modern equipment
to users from universities, R&D institutions, and industries
for their research work / scientific problems. In addition,
EPMA facility has been supported under this scheme at Roorkee
Equipment Available in RSICs/SIFs
RSICs/SIFs are equipped with sophisticated analytical instruments
such as ICP, NMR, EPR, Mass Spectrometers, XRD, TEM, SEM etc.
X-ray Fluorescence Spectrometer has been added this year to
RSIC at Mumbai. In order to enhance the capabilities of the
existing RSICs/SIFs, a few accessories such as Graphite Furnace
and hydride Generator were provided to RSIC at Nagpur and
Ultramicrotome to SIF at New Delhi. All the above major instruments
remained functional for use.
SICART starts functioning
A new Sophisticated Instrumentation Centre for Research
and Testing (SICART) at Vallabh Vidyanagar, Gujarat,
has started functioning. The centre will be formally inaugurated
by Secretary, DST shortly. The major equipment procured and
put to use are : XRD, ICP-AES, GC, HPLC and SEM. Activities
on advanced research and testing of instruments have also
been undertaken by the Centre.
Utilisation of Facilities
- 5000 scientists, researchers from academic institutions,
R&D labs and industries have utilised the above facilities
during the year. Almost all the universities in the country
have been the users of RSICs/SIFs.
- About 65000 samples were analyzed by the instruments available
in these centres.
- 9 short term courses were organised to create awareness
amongst the users about application of major analytical
- 10 training programmes were undertaken on maintenance
/ repairs/operation of instruments. Technical personnel
from laboratories, universities enhanced their technical
- RSICs/SIFs provided services of testing and calibration
of instruments to users.Value added technical services were
provided by offering a total package of solutions to problems
including sampling, spectrum analysis and interpretation
Rs. 70 lakhs have been generated by RSICs/SRFs from the users
from R&D laboratories and industries. About Rs.1 crore was
the notional revenue generation as a result of using the facilities
by internal users.
- Suspected part of Leonid Meteorites shower has been confirmed
by RSIC, Chennai by analyzing a piece of meteorites found
on November 18,1999 on the outskirts of Chennai. The sample
has been kept in the Repository Museum of Geological Survey
of India, at Calcutta and the data is of international importance.
- Central nervous system disorders are important causes
of childhood mortality, morbidity and disability. Meningitis
is a major disease. It is generally of three types viz.
Pyogenic, Tubercular and Acute Encephalitis. NMR analysis
of CSF samples of these diseases on 157 patients by RSIC
at CDRI, Lucknow indicated that NMR analysis provides a
more disease specific differentiation. The results/study
is of national and international importance.
- Study of dating the dunes of Thar Desert and Environmental
Impact Assessment of solid waste dumping at Jagatpura,
Rajasthan carried out by using RSIC facilities at IIT, Mumbai
is of immense utility.
Improvement of S&T Infrastructure in Universities and Other
Higher Educational Institutions (FIST)
- Open Houses for college teachers were organised
by IIT, Chennai for giving them an opportunity to know about
- All RSICs/SIFs have published brochures detailing their
activities, available instruments, charges and other service
In order to strengthen the infrastructure to take up R&D
programmes, a new initiative called "Fund for Improvement
of S&T Infrastructure in Universities and other Higher
Educational Institutions (FIST)" has been approved. This
programme will help selected universities/other academic institutions,
departments to augment their research activities and their
visibility at national / international level.
The programme would be announced shortly through scientific
journals and other media and will be taken up in next Financial
Year for which a provision of Rs.25.00 Crores has been made.
to Professional Bodies, Seminars and Symposia
The S&T Professional Bodies and Academics
of Science and Engineering play an important role in creating
cohesiveness amongst the Scientific Community by arranging
regular Annual Technical Meetings and Seminars, Conferences,
Workshops, etc. and publishing scientific journals, annals
and bulletins etc.
During the year 100 professional bodies were provided partial
support for undertaking various S&T activities. These
include The Zoological Society, Indian Chemical Society, Indian
Institute of Metals, Indian Botanical Society, Calcutta Mathematical
Society, Indian Physics Association, Forum D'Analysts, IETE,
Indian Concrete Institute, Guha Research Conference, Bombay
Natural History Society, Materials Research Society of India,
Institution of Chemists, International Medical Science Academy,
etc. Some of the Professional Societies supported on a continuing
basis during the period include Current Science Association,
Geological Society of India, National Institute of Advanced
Studies, SPIC Mathematical Insitute (now named as Chennai
Mathematical Institute), Society of Indian Ocean Studies,
Jagdish Bose National Science Talent Search, etc.
The Department also extends partial support, on a selective
basis, for organizing seminar/symposia/training programs/workshops/Conferences
at a national as well as international level. The support
is provided to Research Institutes/Universities/Medical and
Engineering Colleges and other Academic Institutes/ Professional
Bodies who organize such events for the scientific community
to keep abreast of the latest developments in their specific
areas. The support is generally towards encouraging participation
of Young Scientists and Research Workers in such events alongwith
publication of the Proceedings/Abstracts for wider dissemination.
In the current year, 135 seminars/symposia including 42 international
events were provided financial support. Important ones supported
are International Biophysics Congress, International Conference
on Education in Botanic Garden, Industrial Tribology, Vibration
Problems, Laser material and Devices, Citriculture, Eco-friendly
S&T for 21st Century, Rapidly quenched and Metastable
Materials, Asia Pacific Cancer Conference, Atraumatic Restorative
Treatment, Frontiers in Structural Biology, Computer modelling
simulation and communication, etc. and National Seminar on
Laser, Plasma Science & Technology, Cancer, Condensed
matter physics, Carbohydrate research, NMR Imaging, Neuroscience,
Targets for New Drug Development, Aromatic plants, Surgery
update, Cryogenics, DNA Fingerprinting, etc.
The construction of Seminar Complex at the Central University,
Hyderabad was recently completed. The Complex is likely to
be operational very soon.
Financial Assistance (PFA)
The objective of the scheme is to provide partial
travel assistance to the Indian Scientists working in the
Educational/Academic Institutions and National R&D Laboratories
to enable them to participate in the International Conferences/Workshops
etc. To provide an opportunity to the Indian Scientists to
interact with their foreign counterparts which enables them
to update their knowledge and also present their research
findings at an International level for a better peer reviewing.
During the year 1999-2000, 396 candidates have been supported
through this scheme out of which 107 were young scientists.
The important conferences in which Indian scientists participated
were Symposium on Environmental Pollution, International Congress
of Pharmacology, International Congress on Plant Tissue &
Cell, International Geoscience & Remote Sensing Symposium,
International Conference on Very Large Databases, International
Conference on Numerical Methods & Applications, International
Conference on Polyphenols, International Conference on Magnetic
Resonance & related Phenomena, International Conference
on Toxicology in Developing Countries, International Conference
on Thermophysical Properties of Materials, International Conference
on Statistics etc.