Latest Posts


Monday, June 20, 2011

Postal van that runs on power:

BANGALORE: Campuses across the country could run electric postal vans if the department of science and technology (DST) makes IISc's innovative electric postal van a model. Researchers at IISc's Centre for Product Design and Manufacturing are excited by the idea of approaching DST while already having approached a few private companies to commercialize their in-house product.
To keep IISc campus green and clean and save energy, which can be the case with all campuses in the country, researchers led by Prof Anindya Deb have designed an electric postal van that will begin operations in two months time.
Deb explains the van is special for two reasons. "The van has been made based on the unique space frame body design. In simple terms, it is a lightweight van made out of aluminium tubes integrated through innovative engineering. The aluminium tubular frame keeps the van very light. There is no use of steel, a feature of conventional vehicles. The van is also special because it runs on battery __ an electric motor powers the van which makes it an eco-friendly product too."
The van, named Vidyut, is 4 metres long and weighs around 800 kg. The batteries weigh 300 kg. "To offset weight of the batteries, we have used lightweight aluminium to design the van. An 800 kg vehicle spread over 4 metres makes it light," Deb explains. For every battery charge, the van runs 60-70 km and can be charged once in three-four days if used within campus. The van approximately costs Rs 5-6 lakh.
The van is a boon to IISc as the existing van has postal boxes which are at a height of almost 6-6.5 feet making it very difficult to reach out. The new van is at the height of a car __ around 4 feet __ and has 100 mail boxes inside it ensuring easy reach.
Funded by IISc, the design of the van, which took five years, is a dream come true. "We made this van with less than 10 people. We have a workable product with virtually no manpower. We are not a company and we don't have the privilege of having hundreds of engineers. We're researchers primarily and not product manufacturers," Deb explains.
Can the van be used in the city and can it be commercialized? "The van is a real product. It can be modified to run in the city, which requires certification from the automotive institute in Pune and the regional transport office concerned. Technically speaking it can be run on the roads.
Source: The Times of India, June 14, 2011

No comments:

Post a Comment