Shared from the 2018-04-23 The Times Of India - Bhopal eEdition

Driverless cars to drones: Tech makes future perfect

City Techies Bag 1st Prize At Hackathon


A driverless car that can perform with ease in Indian weather conditions, agri tech solutions that promises to increase agricultural yield 20-times more than conventional farming and a drone that can actually double up as security agent — were some of the top models that won accolades at the Bhopal smart city hackathon that concluded here on Sunday.

For those keen on the task to make their ideas industry ready, can look forward to the soon-to-be launched smart city incubation centre. The centre would have dedicated facilities for nurturing innovations and make them market-ready.

Speaking at the closing session of 36-hour non-stop hackathon event, Bhopal Smart City Development Corporation Limited (BSCDCL) CEO Chandramauli Shukla said, “Mentoring by the best experts, an internet connection of 3-Gbps and unlimited access to on-demand cloud computing services will be offered at the incubation centre.” Smart city has tied up with companies such as Amazon, Microsoft and others for the paid subscription. It would be available to those associated with smart city incubation centre, said BSCDCL’s Yogesh Khakre.

Of the 97 teams that participated in the two-day event, ten were selected to make a final pitch for their innovations. The top three teams were from Bhopal and have been selected to develop their projects in a four-month association with Bhopal smart city.

Hewlett-Packard programme manager and jury member for the hackathon event Ravindra Kini said, “Quality of ideas and relevance to pain points for an urban city like Bhopal were covered by the participants. The kind of tech improvement witnessed in the Bhopal smart city event is on par with hackathons held in metro cities.”

Winner: ‘Smart Being’

Vertical farming is the answer to overcome shortage of land in urban landscape. The project proposes use of vertical structures that would increase agri-growth by making use of concrete rooftops. Compared to conventional farming, the project aims to use 70% to 90% less water. This rational use would be through utilisation of sensors and other tech that would better germination and help in growing vegetables and fruits that need less space. For example, a floor area of 1,000 sq feet could be set up for less than a Rs 1 lakh. The yield is 20-times more than conventional farming and break even can be achieved in two years, claimed the project team. Farming in urban areas would also reduce carbon footprint.

Team members: Suyash Dwivedi, Sudhir Jain and Swapnil Karambelkar from Bhopal


‘Smart Being’ team with the winner’s cheque (top) and (above left) a car that operates on perception technology, (right) a safety drone at the smart city hackathon held in Bhopal on Sunday

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