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CSIR NEWS

 

ISSN 0409-7467    
Vol. 53

No. 18

30 SEPTEMBER 2003

 

President of India Dr A. P. J. Abdul Kalam graces the Silver Jubilee celebrations at CIMAP

THE silver jubilee function of Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP), Lucknow, was graced by the presence of President of India Dr A. P. J. Abdul Kalam. In his address on the occasion, President Kalam lauded the efforts of CIMAP in development and transfer of mint and geranium technologies for social transformation in the country.

 

President of India Dr A. P. J. Abdul Kalam (extreme right) at the Silver Jubilee
function of CIMAP. Seen with him are: U.P. Governor Shri Vishnu Kant Shastri
 (center), and CIMAP Director Dr S. P. S. Khanuja

 

The President called upon the scientists of CIMAP to not only develop technology for production but also add value to medicinal plants and develop products for marketing at national and international level. For this, CIMAP should now focus its attention on establishing linkage between modern sciences of medicinal and aromatic plants with our age‑old traditional knowledge of herbs, he added. The President also called for conserving the rich biodiversity that exists in our great Nation, and added that the herbal garden set up at Rashtrapati Bhawan with participation of CIMAP has been visited by many children who are now inclined towards life sciences and allied areas of biotechnology.

 

Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, accompanied by Dr S.P.S. Khanuja Director and & scientists of CIMAP,

inspecting the CIMAP products and exhibits (left) ; and visiting the CIMAP Farm

 

President Kalam also released some CIMAP publications, two new plant varieties —`Cim‑Jeevan' of Phyllanthus amarus and `Cim‑Ayu' of Tulsi, and a CD, `Cimsrishti', which provides information on aromatic and medicinal plant varieties developed by CIMAP.

 

  

Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam planting Rudraksha sapling in 'MANAV Park', and

interacting  with school going children of CIMAP staff

 

Dr S. P. S. Khanuja, Director, CIMAP, welcomed the President and other dignitaries, which included the Uttar Pradesh Governor Shri Vishnu Kant Shastri, and presented a brief account of 25 years of R&D at CIMAP. Dr Khanuja also took the President and other dignitaries to an exhibition on CIMAP technologies and products and the MANAV Park. The President planted a Rudraksha sapling and also interacted with the school‑going children of CIMAP staff.

While leaving, President Kalam recorded his appreciation for the CIMAP's contributions as:

“I am delighted to visit CIMAP on the occasion of Silver Jubilee. Excellent contributions for the country. My best wishes.”

 

NBRI Technology for Herbal Beer transferred to ANJS Exports Pvt. Ltd, Kanpur

THE National Botanical Research Institute (NBRI), Lucknow, has transferred its technology for the herbal beer (fruit‑based fermented health drink) to M/s ANJS Exports Pvt. Ltd, Kanpur. The technology transfer documents were handed over by NBRI Director Dr P. Pushpangadan to Shri K. K. Kaya, Director, ANJS Exports, on 24 July 2003. Earlier, Dr S. Nigam, a representative of ANJS Exports was given training and demonstration of the technology for preparation and quality control of herbal beer from plant resources during 14‑19 July 2003.

Dr P. Pushpangadan, Director, NBRI, handing over the technology transfer documents
for herbal beer to the representative of M/s ANJS Exports Pvt. Ltd

 

Memorandum of Collaboration between NEERI and IOCL

A memorandum of collaboration (MoC) was signed between National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), Nagpur, and Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL), on 21 August 2003, at New Delhi, for the project: `Air Quality Monitoring and Emission Source Apportionment Studies'. Shri A. K. Mehta, General Manager, IOCL, welcomed Dr S. Devotta, Director, NEERI, and highlighted the basic objectives of this project and NEERI's expertise in the field. Shri Mehta expressed that the project would help in strengthening the measures to be taken for environmental protection and benefit all the concerned industries. Dr Devotta assured that NEERI would be fully committed to the project and would fulfill its obligation as per the MoC. The meeting was attended by Shri N. R. Raje, Director, IOCL (R&D), alongwith other senior officials of IOCL, Dr S. Devotta and his team from NEERI, and representatives from BPCL, RIL and CPCB.

 

RRL‑Bhopal: R&D Briefs
Surface Modification of Farm Implements

THE Regional Research Laboratory (RRL), Bhopal, has recently concluded an ICAR‑sponsored project titled, `Surface Modification and Reconditioning of Farm Implements for Improved Performance'. Under this project, a variety of soil and crop engaging components were studied for possible improvement in their performance through metallurgical treatments. The studies showed that there is a wide scope of improvement through different metallurgical treatments on a cost‑economic basis.

Significant improvements in the field performance of the components, viz. duckfoot sweep, thresher peg and furrow opener were realized through surface modification and heat treatment. The degree of improvement varied from 48 to 80% depending on the material of the component and the metallurgical treatment adopted.

Evaluation of Landfill Site for Solid Waste Disposal of Orient Paper Mills, Amlai

Orient Paper Mills, Amlai, proposes to dispose of the solid waste such as coal ash, fly ash, lime sludge into an abandoned area of Sharda open cast mines near the factory. For the evaluation of landfill site for disposal of solid waste, RRL‑Bhopal analyzed the samples of ground and surface water, soil, fly ash and sludges, for various physico‑chemical parameters. Permeability tests on original soil samples and strata have also been carried out in the laboratory for identifying the nature of soil at the site.

Advanced Technology for Recovering Iron Values from Ultra‑fines

Iron ore fines from Karnataka region, typically containing 63.5% iron, 2.5% alumina and 3.5% silica are processed using conventional spiral classifiers, rake classifiers and various stages of classification in hydrocyclones to produce concentrates containing about 60% iron. Even in an efficiently operated plant in this region, the concentrate weight percentage recovery is reported to be only 60%. An exploratory study has been carried out at RRL, Bhopal, for increasing the concentrate recovery using water‑injection cyclone.

The studies have indicated that concentrates with grades above 67.5% iron and with alumina and silica values below 0.5% and 1.6% respectively can be produced through a single stage treatment in water injection cyclone maintaining weight recovery values between 80 to 92%. This technology increases the iron recovery by a minimum value of 20% in single stage. Thus in an operating plant of 1000 tph of feed, an additional 200 tonnes of the concentrate is produced. And with a minimum value of Rs 50 per tonne of the concentrate, 8‑hour shift and 250 operating dates, the economic benefit works out to be Rs 20 million/annum. Presently, the discussions on technology transfer are in progress with various iron ore industries.

Experimental Studies of a New Phenomenon of Spectral Switch

RECENTLY, Prof. J. Pu and his collaborators at Huaqiao University, Fujian, China and University of Tsukuba, Ibaraki, Japan, discovered theoretically an interesting phenomenon that when a class of partially coherent light is diffracted at a circular aperture, the spectrum of the diffracted light, close to certain distances from the aperture plane in the near zone, changes drastically. It was found that a spectral line becomes blue shifted for some critical value on one side of these distances, becomes red shifted on the other side and breaks into two lines at special distances. Referred to as `spectral switch', this phenomenon is dependent on the state of partial coherence of light. It has also been predicted theoretically that for on‑axis and off‑axis points of observation, in the far zone of an aperture, the rapid transition of the spectrum depends on the radius of the aperture and on the effective correlation length of the light at the aperture.

The Optical Radiation Standards Section of National Physical Laboratory (NPL), New Delhi, has made experimental observations of the phenomenon of spectral switch in the near zone, and for on‑axis and off‑axis spectra points of observation in the far zone of an aperture. It has been shown that for a fixed diffractive angle (off‑axis point) depending on the state of coherence of the light, one can observe the phenomenon of spectral shift (a gradual change in the spectrum) and a rapid transition, i.e. spectral switch at some critical value of coherence. The coherence that causes the spectral switch to take place has been found to be different at different angles, and a new phenomenon of 1´N spectral switch in the diffraction of partially coherent light by the aperture has been observed. These experimental studies might find application in developing spectrum‑selective optical interconnects and would be of immense use in optical computers. These studies have been covered in the following research papers, which have been widely cited:

1. Experimental observation of the phenomenon of spectral switch, H.C. Kandpal, J. Opt A: Pure and Appl. Opt., 3, 296‑299 (2001)

2. Experimental observation of the phenomenon of spectral switching for a class of partially coherent light, H.C. Kandpal, Suman Anand and J.S. Vaishya, IEEE J. Quant. Electron, 38, 336‑339 (2002)

3. Experimental study of the phenomenon of 1´N spectral switches due to diffraction of partially coherent light, Suman Anand, B.K. Yadav and H.C. Kandpal, J. Opt. Soc. Am., A 19, 2223‑2228 (2002)

 

Projects taken up by CLRI

THE Central Leather Research Institute (CLRI), Chennai, has taken up the following projects recently:

 

Technology developed and licensed, Sponsored Projects taken up, Technical Services rendered  and Patents filed by CECRI

THE technology developed and licensed, sponsored projects taken up, technical services rendered and patents filed by the Central Electrochemical Research Institute (CECRI), Karaikudi, during May‑June 2003, include:

Technology developed
Technology licensed
Sponsored Projects
Patents filed
Patents granted to NAL

THE National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL), Bangalore, has been granted four patents during 2002-03. Three of these (European, Japanese and Indian patents) are for the same invention titled `A foil journal bearing having straight foils useful for providing support for high speed rotors and a process for the fabrication of the said bearing'. The inventors are: Dr S. Ramamurthy (now Head, TS), Dr V. Arun Kumar, Mr V. Rangarajan and Mr S. Siddalingappa (Propulsion Division). The fourth (Indian) patent granted is for the invention titled `An improved process for the preparation of silicon nitride in the form of powders and whiskers' of Dr P. S. Gopalakrishnan and Mr P. S. Lakshminarasimham (Materials Science Division).

Patents filed by CLRI

THE Central Leather Research Institute (CLRI), Chennai, has filed the following three patents recently:

 

CECRI celebrates Foundation Day

THE Central Electrochemical Research Institute (CECRI), Karaikudi, celebrated its Foundation Day on 25 July 2003. Shri K. Sivaramakrishnan Nair, former Executive Director of M/s Kerala Hi‑Tech Limited, Thiruvananthapuram, was the Chief Guest. Dr R. Jayaraman, Director, Centre for Entrepreneurship Development, Madurai, delivered special address.

 

Dr C. S. P. Iyer, Head, C-MARS, RRL-Thiruvananthapuram, delivering the Foundation Day Lecture
on `Electrochemistry, Environment and Health' at CECRI

Presiding over the Foundation Day celebrations, Dr M. Raghavan, the then Director, CECRI, said that CECRI continues to render service to the people through its various societal mission activities. He informed that efforts are being made to establish a `clean technology park' for the benefit of electroplating industries located in and around Madurai, with the help of the Ministry of Environment and Forests and the State Pollution Control Board. The programme would be completed soon and CECRI would act as a technical and coordinating agency for the establishment of the park. Dr Raghavan pointed out that over the years CECRI has generated 710 patents and developed more than 210 processes covered by these patents. The processes have been licensed to entrepreneurs leading to the setting up of many industrial units which are helping in the all around development of the country.

Delivering the Foundation Day Lecture on `Electrochemistry, Environment and Health', Dr C. S. P. Iyer, Head, C‑MARS, RRL‑Thiruvananthapuram, said electrochemistry has made substantial contributions to the winning of metals from ores and development of new materials. Based on the principles of electrochemistry, a number of techniques have been developed which have made possible the analysis of constituents or impurities, right from the percentage to parts per billion level. Expertise in this field has helped in developing methodologies for treatment of pollutants — gas, liquid and solid.

Earlier, Shri S Krishnamurthy, Deputy Director, CECRI, welcomed the gathering. Dr D. C. Trivedi, Deputy Director, CECRI, proposed a vote of thanks.

Prizes were given to the winners of the mini marathon race organized by the staff club for the college students on the eve of CECRI Foundation Day.

 

National Seminar on Futuristic Aspects of Electrochemical Science and Technology (FAEST 2003)

AS a part of the CSIR Diamond Jubilee Year and CECRI Foundation Day celebrations, the Central Electrochemical Research Institute (CECRI), Karaikudi, in association with the Soceity for Advancement of Electrochemical Science and Technology (SAEST) and National Corrosion Council of India (NCCI), Karaikudi, organized a two‑day National Seminar on Futuristic Aspects of Electrochemical Science and Technology (FAEST) at Karaikudi during 23 – 24 July 2003.

 

Dr M. Raghavan, the then Director, CECRI, delivering his Presidential Address at
 Na
tional Seminar on Futuristic Aspects of Electrochemical Science and Technology

Inaugurating the seminar, Dr N. Mani, Registrar, University of Madras, presented statistical figures to show how far science and technology are interlinked, and stressed the need to develop cost effective and clean technologies for the benefit of our society. Dr M. Raghavan, the then Director, CECRI, in his presidential address, explained how the research outputs and technologies developed at CECRI have immensely benefited in the area of pollution control, energy savings in chlor‑alkali industries, and the Defence sector.

Releasing the souvenir brought out on the occasion, Shri V. Gnana Gandhi, Project Director, ISRO, highlighted the contributions of Dr. M. Raghavan towards the growth and development of CECRI. Prof K.I. Vasu, former Director, CECRI, stressed the need to develop indigenous technologies in all ares.

Dr S. Nilavazhagan, Principal, Anjalai Ammal Mahalingam Engineering College, Kovilvenni; Dr A.K. Suri, Head, Material Processing Division, BARC, Mumbai, and Dr A. Rajendran, Deputy Director and Scientist‑in‑charge of CECRI unit at Thoothukudi offered warm felicitations to Dr M. Raghavan on his 61st birth anniversary.

Earlier, Shri S. Krishnamurthy, Deputy Director, CECRI, welcomed the gathering, Dr C.O. Augustin, Scientist and Convener of the seminar, briefed about the seminar and Shri K.R. Ramakrishnan, Deputy Director, CECRI, read out the messages.

Dr D.C. Trivedi, Deputy Ditector, CECRI, proposed the vote of thanks.

While giving acceptance speech, Dr Raghavan observed that the two‑day seminar would not only focus the futuristic aspects but also attempt to find solutions to many scientific and technological problems. He thanked his CECRI colleagues for their cooperation and support.

About 200 scientists participated in the deliberations of the seminar which had five plenary lectures and 83 contributed papers. Fifteen papers were presented in the oral and the rest in poster sessions on the following themes: Corrosion and industrial metal finishing; Electrochemical energy sources; Electrochemical materials science; Electrometallurgy and electrochemicals; and Electrodics, electro‑analysis and pollution control.

 

Seminar on Good Laboratory Practice: Principles and Practices

WITH the establishment of a National GLP Compliance Monitoring Authority at the Department of Science and Technology, New Delhi, it has become imperative that all regulatory research studies, particularly the non‑clinical toxicology/safety studies, should be done in compliance to OECD principles of Good Laboratory Practices (GLP). CSIR, the premier research organization of India, recognized this up and coming science policy and has started a programme to implement GLP principles in its laboratories. In pursuance of this organizational objective, the Industrial Toxicology Research Centre (ITRC), Lucknow, organized an institutional seminar on `Good Laboratory Practice (GLP): Principles and Practice' on 16 July 2003, with the primary objectives of:

The seminar had three speakers: Prof. Y.K. Gupta, Director, ITRC; Dr D.K. Agarwal, Head, GLP Implementation & Monitoring Section, ITRC; and Dr Sudhir Srivastava, Head, Toxicology Division, Central Drug Research Institute (CDRI), Lucknow, who comprehensively addressed various aspects of GLP, followed by general discussion.

At the outset, Prof. Y.K. Gupta introduced the GLP concept, its salient features, need for GLP implementation in non‑clinical toxicology/safety studies and its relevance to the country in general and ITRC in particular. He reviewed the efforts and progress made at ITRC. He lauded the NABL‑accreditation of biological and chemical testing services at ITRC as a proof of quality and expertise in toxicology studies, establishment of independent Quality Assurance Unit and state‑of‑art Archives as requisite components towards GLP implementation. He also mentioned about the sizable group of GLP/NABL trained scientists, some of which are qualified GLP‑inspectors and NABL‑assessors, to help accomplish GLP standards at ITRC. He hoped that the seminar would provide the necessary impetus to apply uniform quality system, documentation and practices in all the laboratories of ITRC to help it emerge as the first GLP‑compliant laboratory of CSIR.

Dr D.K. Agarwal dwelt upon the technical aspects of GLP, particularly the policies & procedures towards Organization and Personnel Management including the Chief Executing Officer, Study Director and Principle Investigator, Quality Assurance Programme, and Archiving. He spoke at length about basic definitions, historical developments, scope of activities and categories of substances under purview of GLP, organization and responsibilities of Management, Study Director, Principle Investigator, study personnel, Quality assurance Manager and Archivist, quality assurance procedure, construction, security and functioning of Archives, role of GLP compliance Monitoring Authority and Regulatory Agencies, benefits of GLP implementation, and status of GLP compliance at ITRC. He concluded his talk with a note that GLP implementation is easier than general perception if there is an honest effort.

Dr Sudhir Srivastava focused on the categories and methods of documentation required for GLP, including the Study Plan, Master Schedule, SOPs raw data, final report, and amendments to documents, facilities including laboratories, test system and test/reference substance housing and handling equipment, sanitation and health monitoring, environmental controls, etc., to comprehensively complete the directives of GLP. His take home message was that for GLP compliance all things must be demonstrably fit for the purpose, be it organization, personnel, management, QA, facilities, documentation or practice.

Dr P.K. Seth, former Director, ITRC, in his comments mentioned that the seminar was well timed and an effort in right direction for GLP implementation at ITRC as the institute is committed to apply these principles in several CSIR Networked projects and is looked upon as premier agency in India to deliver non‑clinical toxicology/safety data that can be globally accepted for regulatory and academic purposes.

Attended by scientists and technical staff of ITRC and other CSIR labs at Lucknow, the seminar got an overwhelming response. The general discussion was full of enthusiasm, indicative of improved understanding and renewed interest to practice GLP, and a desire to stand up and be counted as GLP compliant toxicologists, It was suggested that a brain‑storming session on GLP should be arranged in a month's time to interactively analyze the things that can be achieved immediately, things achievable with some effort in near future, and things that require constant honing and time to accomplish GLP at ITRC.

 

National Workshop on Innovative Building Construction Machinery

THE Central Building Research Institute (CBRI), Roorkee, organized as part of CSIR Diamond Jubilee Celebrations, a one‑day National Workshop on `Innovative Building Construction Machinery' CONSMACH‑2003 on 22 August 2003 at Roorkee. The workshop was sponsored by CPWD and co‑sponsored by M/s PEC Hydraulics (India) Ltd, Yamunanagar; Build Tech Engineering Co., Roorkee; The Time Engineers, Chandrapur; Dayal Machine Mfg. Co., Ahmedabad; Uttaranchal Industries Pvt. Ltd, Dehra Dun; Escorts Construction Equipment Ltd, Faridabad and Anil Ent Udyog, Roorkee. About 60 delegates representing various organizations from different parts of the country attended the workshop.

 

National Workshop on `Innovative Building Construction Machinery' in progress

Shri V.K. Mathur, Director, CBRI, in his presidential address pointed out that in India more than 50% outlay is allocated for building construction activity, which has now been accepted as an industry. Stating that still age old methods are being used in concreting and in so many other activities in building construction, Shri Mathur stressed that mechanization is inseparable part of the building industry. He emphasized on the need for bringing about mechanization in the building industry, which is cost effective, energy efficient and eco‑friendly.

Dr Vimal Kumar, Adviser, TIFAC, DST, New Delhi, expressed his views about mechanization in construction industry. He termed this workshop as `unique in nature', and endorsed the view expressed by Shri Mathur that mechanization part is generally neglected in building construction industry. It has vast potential for R&D and commercialization. World class capital goods are missing here and such a challenging task needs to be taken as `Mission Mode' programme. He suggested that our vision for machinery segment should not be restricted to local/regional market in India but should include other developing countries as well.

Dr D.V. Singh, the Chief Guest and Vice‑President of Indian National Academy of Engineers, in his inaugural address expressed that in World Trade Organisation (WTO) regime, civil engineers are advised to register themselves with Engineering Mobility Forum (EMF) to get their professional recognition to work any where in the world. He stressed on the development of extremely sophisticated technologies and use of innovative machines. He also stressed on the need of disaster‑resistant technologies. He put forward the emerging concept of `Green Building' which is energy efficient, compatible with environment, relates to health in symbolic manner, considers solar orientation, and uses naturally available local material. He hoped that in future, prefabricated components will be preferred and use of robotics will increase in the construction industry. He suggested that such technologies should be adopted which generate minimum waste or its waste is recycled. Dr Singh also emphasized on the consideration of life cycle costing instead of initial capital cost of an item.

Shri R.L. Gupta, Organizing Secretary, CONSMECH‑2003, explained that it is possible to meet the increasing demand of housing at a faster rate by using appropriate mechanized labour‑intensive machinery and construction techniques.

Dr Vimal Kumar chaired the Technical Session where 21 research papers were discussed on the themes : Foundation & Ground Improvement, Material Handling, Precast Concrete Components, Concreting, Mixing, Casting & Pumping of Concrete, Production of Building Materials and Components and Appliction of Information Technology in Building Construction Machinery.

Shri J.P. Kaushish, former Scientist `G', CBRI, delivered the key‑note address and gave a brief review of research papers received for the workshop.

Live demonstration of various building construction machinery & equipment was also arranged.

 

National Training Course on Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (ICP‑MS)

SPONSORED by the Department of Science and Technology, a five‑day National Training Course on `ICP‑MS and Associated Analytical Techniques for Geochemical, Mineral Exploration and Environmental Studies', was held at National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI), Hyderabad, during 21 – 25 July 2003. The objective of this course was to provide the participants an opportunity to learn the theoretical and practical aspects of important analytical techniques in the field of geochemistry, mineral exploration and environmental sciences. Forty‑eight participants from various organizations in 14 states attended the course.

 

Dr N. K. Agarwal, Dy. DG, Training Institute, Geological Survey of India, Hyderabad, inaugurating the Training Course
on `ICP-MS and Associated Analytical Techniques for Geochemical, Mineral Exploration and Environmental Studies'
 by lighting the ceremonial lamp. Other seen with him are: Dr V. P. Dimri, Director, NGRI (centre), Dr S. M. Naqvi,
Senior Scientist, NGRI (extreme right) and Dr V. Balaram, Convener and Course Coordinator (near the podium)

The inaugural function was presided over by Dr N. K. Agarwal, Dy. DG, Training Institute, Geological Survey of India, Hyderabad, who appreciated the efforts of NGRI in organizing such a course.

Dr V. P. Dimri, Director, NGRI, welcomed the participants and exhorted them to actively interact with the scientists of different divisions of the institute. Dr Balaram, Scientist and the Course Coordinator, in his introductory address highlighted the background and objective of the course. Dr S. M. Naqvi, Scientist, formally released the Proceedings Volume of the Training Course and urged the participants to make best use of the facilities at NGRI.

During the first four days, experts from Geological Survey of India, Hyderabad; Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad; Andhra University, Visakhapatnam; Hutti Gold Mines Limited, Hutti; Indian Institute of Chemical Technology, Hyderabad; National Centre for Compositional Characterization of Materials, Hyderabad, and NGRI, delivered lectures on various topics related to the main theme of the training course. On the last day, scientists from NGRI; Physical Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad; Delhi University, Delhi; Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi; Geological Survey of India, Hyderabad; Atomic Mineral Division, Hyderabad, delivered invited lectures on fast emerging areas such as, exploration geochemistry by integrated studies, environmental geochemistry and palaeoclimates, geochemical data processing and modelling.

During the concluding session, representatives of the participants expressed that the course had helped them immensely in improving their knowledge and that NGRI is the only place in the country which has such world‑class and state‑of‑the‑art geochemical and isotopic instrumentation facilities under one roof. They also expressed that this exposure would certainly benefit them in focusing and shaping their future scientific endeavours.

Dr S. M. Dutta, Dy. DG, Geological Survey of India, Hyderabad, awarded the certificates to the participants. Dr Dimri, Director, NGRI, congratulated the participants and advised them to utilize the expertise gained by attending this course, in their research endeavors.

 

NBRI Training Programmes on Floriculture

THE Floriculture Division of National Botanical Research Institute (NBRI), Lucknow, has developed several technologies for the benefit of floriculture industry in the country. It has developed technology packages for `Dehydration of flowers and floral craft', `Commercial floriculture' and `Induced mutagenesis for improvement of vegetatively propagated ornamentals'. NBRI conducts training programmes on these packages, which are helping in employment generation and the growth of floriculture industry. During the past one year, following such programmes were conducted under the sponsorship of various government/non‑government


NATIONAL

Training Programmes on ‘Dehydration of flowers and
floral crafts’
Group Training

Place and Participants

Date

Number of participants

Sponsor

·          Lucknow: Housewives, unemployed youth, etc

4-6 Apr. 02

25

SIDBI, Kanpur

·          Chetena Institute, Lucknow:
Physically challenged children

30 May – 1 June 02

5

-

·          Himachal Pradesh: Rural women

1-4 Oct. 02

35

DBT

·          Ramkrishna Math, Lucknow:
Housewives

4-6 Dec. 02

35

DBT

·          Uttaranchal:
Rural women

26-28 Feb. 02

40

DBT

·          Lucknow:
Housewives, unemployed youth, etc

28-30 Jan. 03

31

SIDBI, Kanpur

·          Lucknow:
Housewives, unemployed youth, etc

2-4 Apr. 03

32

SIDBI, Kanpur

·          Kolkata:
Housewives, students, unemployed youth, etc.

16-18 Apr. 03

30

SIDBI, Kolkata

Individual Training

·          Rajlakshmi Singh, Lucknow

15-19 Apr 02

Self

·          Mr Rajeev Nagar, Chetna Inst., Lucknow (Physically challenged child)

30 May –
1 June 02

-

·          Ms Shobhana Paranjpay

2-7 April 03

Self

 

Training on ‘Floriculture’

Group Training

·          Officers of UP Govt., Lucknow

27-29 Sept 02

25

UPDASP

·          Farmers of UP Govt., Lucknow

9-11 Oct. 02

67

UPDASP

·          Lucknow:
Florists, women, students, farmers, unemployed youth, etc.

4-7 Feb. 03

31

SIDBI, Kanpur

Individual Training

·          Mr Arpit Kumar, Student AAIDU, Allahabad

4 June – 4 Aug. 02

Self

·          Mr Mahendra Gurum, Shillong

19-21 Aug. 02

Self

·          Rajiv Narula, G.G. Univ., Bilaspur

3 Mar. - 3 June 03

Self

·          Satya N Misra, BB Ambedkar Univ. Lucknow

5 Mar. - 5 May 03

Self

·          Sujit Verma, Bundelkhand Univ, Jhansi

22 Apr. - 22 June 03

Self

 

Tissue Culture

Participants

Date

Number of participants

Sponsor

·          Students, Faizabad Univ.

18 Oct. – 18 Nov. 02

4

Self

·          Kaiser Malik, AAIDU, Allahabad

23 Oct. 02 – 23 Jan. 03

1

Self

·          Reshma Kumari, Patna Womens College

20 May – 19 June 03

1

Self

·          Neeta Singh, AAIDU, Allahabad

16 June – 16 July 03

1

Self

·          Priyanka Shilpi, Bundelkhand Univ, Jhansi

16 June – 16 July 03

1

Self

 

 

INTERNATIONAL

Induced Mutagenesis

Participant

Date

Sponsor

·          Mr Sarat Chandra, Sri Lanka

1 July – 30 Sep. 02

IAEA, Vienna

·          Somkid Popan, Thailand

3 March – 2 June 03

IAEA, Vienna

  

Decorative products made from pressed flowers and three-dimensional interior decorative
 items made from dry flowers during a Training Programme

 

First row: Dr P. Pushpangadan, Director, NBRI, presenting a dry flower container to the Head, Ramkrishnan Mission
Lucknow; and Trainees being given a field demonstration of gladiolus Second row: Trainees collecting flowers for
 dehydration; and Dr P. Pushpangadan giving certificates to the participants

 

organizations such as Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), Uttar Pradesh Diversified Agriculture Projects (UPDASP) and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Vienna, Austria, and these were attended by scientists, government officials, businessmen, farmers, students, unemployed youth, amateur growers, florists, housewives, rural women and physically challenged people, etc:

 

World Environment Day Celebrations at NEERI and ITRC

THE theme of this year's World Environment Day Celebrations was : `Water – Two Billion People are Dying for It'.

Celebrations at NEERI

At the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), Nagpur, Dr D.N. Tiwari,  Member, Planning Commission, Government of India, New Delhi, was the Chief Guest. In his key note address, Dr Tiwari,  talked about energy consumers' role in sustainable development. He stressed that it is the right of every citizen to get clean air and water and it is also every citizen's duty to contribute towards achieving this goal. He informed that the percentage greenery in New Delhi has jumped from 1.5% to 10.8% in a year's time after the introduction of CNG. The Government has planned to increase the green cover in the country from the existing 19% to 25% by the end of the present Plan period and 33% by the end of XIth Plan. In order to achieve this goal the Planning Commission has initiated three National Missions on Biofuels, Bamboo and Herbal Medicine, he said.

 

Dr D.N. Tiwari, , Member, Planning Commission, delivering his address on the World Environment Day
 at NEERI. Seated (from left): Dr R.N. Singh, the then Director, NEERI; Shri B.K. Singh,
 Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Maharashtra State;

and Dr S.P. Pandey, Scientist & Head, RPBD Division, NEERI

Elaborating on the Biofuel Mission, Dr Tiwari,  informed that blending of biodiesel would commence from 1 July 2003, while the blending of petrol with ethanol has been already introduced since January 2003. He advocated the cultivation of Jatropa and Ratanjot for the production of biofuel.

He opined that this will improve the air quality of all cities and help in achieving the Bharat 11 and Bharat 111 standards by 2005 and 2010, respectively, as per the Supreme Court orders on emission standards. This mission will help in saving foreign exchange to the tune of Rs 2000 crore and generate employment for two crore people.

Under the Bamboo mission, Dr Tiwari, said, water and soil will be conserved with massive growing of selected bamboo species. Being the biggest conservator of soil and water, bamboo controls the greenhouse effect and also reduces the CO2 output, he added. Informing about the Mission on Herbal and Medicinal Plants, Dr Tiwari, said that promotion of cultivation of these plants and production of medicines are the immediate target. The Government has also taken up the task of purifying three major rivers, 12 lakes and cleaning of groundwater in the country.

Dr S.K. Goyal, Scientist, APC Division, compered the programme and introduced this year's theme of World Environment Day to the audience. Dr R.N. Singh, the then Director of NEERI, gave the welcome address and Dr S.P. Pandey, Scientist & Head, RPBD, proposed a vote of thanks.

Celebrations at ITRC

The day‑long celebrations at the Industrial Toxicology Research Centre (ITRC), Lucknow, started with the plantation of saplings by Dr P.K. Seth the then Director of ITRC and scientists, research fellows and children of CSIR family at the CSIR Scientists Apartment Complex. This was followed by the main function. Dr Q. Rahman, the Chairperson, welcomed the guests, specially the children who had participated in painting competition held on this occasion and highlighted the importance of the Day. While talking about this year's theme, she informed that every sixth person doesn't get safe drinking water and every eighth second a child dies owing to water borne diseases.

Presiding over the function, Dr S.C. Rai, Mayor of Lucknow, laid emphasis on good management of water, to reduce scarcity and improve access to better drinking water. He complimented ITRC for its excellent work in the field of Environmental Health and Environmental Monitoring, and for the services which it is providing to the city. “Lucknow should be grateful to ITRC for taking initiative towards the development of Biotechnology Park in Lucknow. This project has been blessed by the Prime Minister of India, who laid foundation of the Park”.

World Environment Day Celebrations at ITRC. A view of the dais; and Dr P.K. Seth, the then Director
and scientists of ITRC planting saplings to mark the occasion

Dr P.K. Seth in his address said that ITRC has been involved in the National Drinking Water Mission since its inception. ITRC's major contributions include providing the mobile laboratories and kits for rapid analysis of water quality, and devices for the disinfection of water for drinking purposes. Currently, ITRC has taken up studies to develop molecular probes for detection of pathogens in water. Such probes will be highly specific and provide rapid detection and go a long way in safeguarding the health. Dr Seth also mentioned about the contribution of ITRC in monitoring of the major rivers, Ganga and Yamuna, for pesticides and heavy metals. He said that monitoring of the Ganga river has shown that the water quality gets considerably deteriorated in the areas where sewage is discharged. He expressed happiness that the State Government has taken action to stop such discharges. He offered services of ITRC to estimate the impact of pollutants in the sediments.

Dr S.K. Bhargava, Head, Environmental Monitoring Division, presented a report on `Assessment of Environmental Status of Lucknow'. Latest issue of Industrial Toxicology Bulletin and Abstracts of Current Literature in Toxicology were released on the occasion.

Mr Alexander Von Hildebrand, Regional Adviser, Promotion of Chemical Safety, WHO, delivered a lecture on `Children's Environmental Health and Chemical Safety'. Lauding the work of ITRC, he said that water is important for human health and its conservation and preservation is extremely important. He also expressed his desire for collaboration with ITRC in the area of Children's Environment Health.

Dr Nida Besbelli, Toxicologist, WHO, was the Guest of Honour, and she talked about scarcity of water and the grim scenario the world over. She commended the studies conducted by ITRC and said that WHO would like to collaborate with ITRC in several areas, particularly in the area of chemical safety.

In addition, as a part of Environment Day programme, a painting competition was held on 3 June for the children. Around 70 children participated in the competition and the winners were given prizes.

The  function  concluded with a vote of thanks by Dr (Mrs) S. Khandelwal.

 

Prof. Goverdhan Mehta delivers Prof. K. Venkataraman Memorial Lecture at NCL

PROF. Goverdhan Mehta, Director, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, delivered the second Prof. K. Venkataraman Memorial Lecture at National Chemical Laboratory (NCL), Pune, on 19 August 2003. Affectionately known as `KV' to his associates, Prof. K. Venkataraman was the first Indian Director of NCL and headed the laboratory for nine years from 1957.

Prof. Goverdhan Mehta, Director, IISc, delivering Prof. K. Venkataraman Memorial Lecture at NCL

Prof. Mehta spoke on `Design of new molecular objects: Art & logic in organic synthesis'. He said that science progresses through discovery, understanding and creation of natural and unnatural molecules, and highlighted the element of art as well as strategies involved in total synthesis of a variety of novel molecular entities. Stating that chemical synthesis has always attracted researchers because of its beauty, he defined organic synthesis as an active choreography of molecules. He illustrated with examples the conception and synthesis of new objects unleashed by human imagination and instincts, and drew similarities between symmetry of nature and the symmetry of molecules created by organic synthesis. He touched upon similarity between curry bowls as molecular objects and demonstrated how these molecular bowls, including hetero bowls, can be accessed efficiently through creative use of organic chemistry. He also alluded to their fascinating symmetry properties seen during molecular stacking in solid state.

Prof. Mehta described some of the unusual properties of curved aromatic surfaces. He described how one can access complex structures such as fullerenes and bucky bowls by simple, short and general methods involving only three steps of which two steps are devoid of any chemical reagents and can be accomplished by mere photochemical and thermal activation. He also demonstrated the power of covalent self‑assembly process involving cascade cyclization to create rings up to C‑60 hydrocarbons. He drew attention to the power of scientific ingenuity in creating unique ladder like structures, `Ladderanes', in nanometric dimensions. Construction of rings and ring‑like structures is a great challenge to organic chemists. The shape of the square is ubiquitous in geometry. It can be used in organic chemistry as possible precursor to make ladder‑like structures. Ladderanes are linearly fused cyclo‑butanes and these molecular ladders can act as molecular gates for energy and electron transfer due to their excellent molecular rigidity and spacer arrays. He also demonstrated how a variety of these ladderanes could be efficiently synthesized by judicious choice of functional groups, and large assembly of fused carbocyclic rings can be easily accessed by this protocol. He explained how scientific concepts can lead to synthesis of molecular structure unknown to humans. His synthesis of ladderanes was conceived ten years before such structure was found to be naturally occurring, exhibiting important biological properties.

Earlier, Dr S. Sivaram, Director, NCL, in his welcome remarks briefly outlined Prof. K. Venkataraman's seminal contribution to the chemistry of synthetic dyes and natural products. Dr Sivaram appreciated his great vision and leadership qualities. The video clippings of Prof. Venkataraman's contribution to NCL and science in general were also shown on the occasion.

The lecture was organized under the auspices of NCL Research Foundation, a non‑profit trust created to foster all round excellence in science and technology.

 

Special issue of Indian Journal of Chemistry, Sec A
Modern Inorganic Chemistry

As part of the Diamond Jubilee Year of CSIR, the September 2003 issue of Indian Journal of Chemistry, Sec A, has been brought out as a special issue entitled “Modern Inorganic Chemistry”. This issue has been guest edited by Prof. Animesh Chakravorty, Prof. Pradyot Banerjee and Dr. Sreebrata Goswami of the Department of Inorganic Chemistry, Indian Association for the Cultivation of Science, Kolkata 700 032.

Today's inorganic chemistry has an inherent interdisciplinary bias and those who practice it may have to tread freely into the domains of theorists, spectroscopists, crystallographers, physicists, biologists, material scientists and others.  Two of the major events in contemporary inorganic research have been the ascent of bioinorganic chemistry and of inorganic materials chemistry.  The two review articles and several research papers in this issue deal with topics pertaining to these areas. Other important items addressed include macrocyclic, polynuclear and supramolecular systems, metal‑mediated transformations and catalysis, organometallic structure and reactions, metal binding of dihydrogen and other ligands, magnetic interactions, photophenomena, reaction mechanisms and industrially relevant procedures. This issue highlights the challenges and opportunities in contemporary inorganic chemistry.

Request for the issue [pp.308 single copy: Rs. 150; $45.00 by draft payable to NISCAIR at New Delhi] may be sent to:

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