Hyderabad University’s ACRHEM gets DRDO support for research

HYDERABAD: University of Hyderabad today said its ACRHEM (Advanced Centre for Research in High Energy Materials) got Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) support for research on high energy materials to the tune of Rs 113 crore.

ACRHEM got over Rs 90 crore funding during the past decade in two phases, UOH said in a release.

“On successful completion of the identified 32 projects under Phase II, the DRDO Headquarters directed the center to put up proposal for Phase-III. The projects proposed in Phase-III were finalised through a series of discussions that involved various DRDO Labs.

“An expert committee recommended the proposals under phase III with 30 specific projects-22 in chemistry and 8 in physics projects – with a budget outlay of Rs 113 crores for the next five years,” it said.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar approved the proposal and the DRDO released sanction letter to UoH, said the release.

Advanced Centre of Research in High Energy Materials is an interdisciplinary research effort working towards understanding of theoretical/experimental aspects in the areas of Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics & Statistics of processes, Photonics/Electronics instrumentation involved in High Energy Materials.

ACRHEM is in the process of developing state of the art research facilities and techniques for perceiving the properties of high energy materials (HEMs) through experiments with lasers, theoretical calculations and modeling, synthesis of novel HEMs and nano-energetics. ACRHEM also aims for quality teaching with student-faculty ratio highly favorable for individual attention.

The centre has various ongoing research programs in experimental and theoretical fields to train Ph.D. scholars in the areas of fundamental and applied fields of Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics & Statistics, Materials/Electronics and Photonics instrumentation.

The need for establishing Centre of Excellence by DRDO has been projected long back by Security Advisor to Defence Minister. The outlay for such a centre will be typically expected to be Rs.50 crores over a period of 5 years. DRDO proposes 5 such centres that will include:

  1. The science and synthesis of HEM (for use as explosives and propellants).
  2. The science of polymer physics especially polymer Electronics can emergent and for a variety of military semi conductor devices).
  3. The interaction of microwaves and matter (for stealth).
  4. Nanotechnology based sensors for NBC detection.
  5. Nano optoelectronic devices.

Out of these, for item (a), Advanced Centre for Research on High Energy Materials (ACRHEM) has been established with the University of Hyderabad. We have evolved an Memorandum of collaboration (MOC) exclusively for this centre. Parallely, old MOC of DRDO with Bharathiar Unviersity (BU), Coimbatore has been upgraded as a Centre of Excellence called BU-DRDO Centre for Life Sciences. A separate MOC exists exclusively for it. In order to have effective functioning, SOP was proposed and the same has been approved by SA to RM.

DRDO can advertise through newspaper or website the intent of setting up of such a CE in the fields of relevance. This step would stimulate other competitive agencies to submit proposals. Funding of academic institution for research whose expected outcome was judged to be of use in extant DRDO R&D projects/programmes. Instrumentality was the sponsored research proposal ‘instigated’ by a DRDO labroratory or vetted by it for direct relevance of research outcome(s).

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