Back in early 2009, India’s highly reputed defense organization, the DRDO (Defense Research and Development Organization) had announced that they will be commercializing their technologies as spin-off products for civilian purposes. The DRDO initiated a program (PDF link) called Accelerated Technology Assessment and Commercialization (ATAC) in partnership with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).
Earlier this week, under the ATAC initiative, the DRDO signed Memorandum of Understanding with 6 private companies giving them access to research and technology for specific commercial purposes.
The scientists working at DRDO are some of the brightest minds in India and have been crucial to India’s global perception. With immense research in fields like Avionics, Chemistry and other core competencies, the expertise will help the private sector come up with products for the masses quicker. There has been a belief that some of the best technologies are first developed for defense and military purposes and then filtered for commercial applications.
The 6 MoUs signed by DRDO are with the following companies:
- Jyothy Laboratories Ltd. and Alkali Metals Ltd., for Multi-insect repellant based on DEPA
- Jyothy Laboratories for woolcare
- Vantage Security for explosive detection kit
- Deltapure Water India Ltd. and Ariva Group for RO based Water Purification System
- MGM Associates for High Altitude Pulmonary Oedema (HAPO) Chamber
- GSC Glass Ltd. for electrochromic window
These 6 technologies have direct applications in healthcare for civilians. There is a feeling of pride running through me while writing this article and I am looking forward to seeing the hard work put in by the scientists being used for the betterment of society and not just warfare.
The DRDO is now planning to setup its own commercial arm to further this objective of bringing their research technology to the masses.