A total of 14 Indian innovators have bagged the Innovators' Award instituted by aerospace giant, Lockheed Martin Corporation under its India innovation growth programme for innovation in science and technology.
Seven innovators, including four from Bangalore - Amarnath Bhat of Oriental Software, Naresh Babu of Techweb Technologies, R Gopalan of Composites Technology Park and Mahendra Pratap of Integra Microsystems - won gold medals. Other gold medal winners were Janak Seth of Century Pharmaceuticals, Vadodara, T R Rao of Mumbai and Meera Goel of Som Extracts, Ghaziabad.
Silver medal winners included W Amarnath of Chennai, Mohan Kandaswamy of Oriental Aquamarine Biotech, Coimbatore, Ashwin Bhambri of New Delhi, Joydeb Roy Chowdhury from the CSIR's Centre for Mechanical Engineering Research Institute, Durgapur, Basant Kumar Gupta of Mumbai, Vinod Kalande of Akola, and Nimish Sharma from Aurora Integrated Systems, Kanpur.
Giving away the awards in New Delhi, Dr T Ramasami, secretary, Department of Science and Technology, said that there is a great deal of scope for innovation in India, but the challenge was to turn ideas into profit making enterprises. Top innovations included conversion of waste plastic to fuel, a smart card-operated prepaid energy meter with an automatic load controller, apoptotic proteins that can be fused with human proteins for the treatment of diseases like allergy and asthma, formulation of herbal essential oils extracts and isolates that repel mosquitoes, etc.
Lockheed Martin Corporation has launched the India Innovation Growth Programme in collaboration with the Federation of Indian Industry and Commerce and IC2 Institute at the University of Texas in March 2007, to help Indian innovators take their technologies to the US and European markets. The programme provides training to the selected innovators on the commercialisation of their ideas. It is a two-year nationwide project, created to enhance the growth and development of India's entrepreneurial economy.