Four Indians On This Year’s MIT’s ’35 Innovators Under 35′ List
Each year, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) publishes a list of 35 innovators under the age of 35. This year four Indians made it to this prestigious list: Rahul Panicker, Aaswath Raman, Saurabh Srivastava and Rohan Paul, all of them in their early 30s, serving the society in much needed ways.
Here’s a brief look at the profiles of these inspiring innovators and their path breaking innovations –
1. Rahul Panicker, co-founder of Embrace Innovations
Rahul Panicker is an engineer from India, returned home after completing PhD from Stanford and started Embrace, in 2009, with a ground breaking idea and a dream to help the unfortunate masses who can’t afford an expensive health care for their new-born. Embrace produces incubators that run on hot water and not electricity, thus conserving energy and money. They cost only 1% of what normal incubator’s cost and can keep babies warm for up to 6 hours after birth, thus taking care of the critical initial hours of care.
Today his incubators have been used in 15 countries and has helped about 2,00,000 babies. His work, which focuses on helping people deprived of technology get real-time information online, is primarily in voice and gesture-based interfaces for users.
Click here for Rahul Panicker’s MIT Technology review profile.
2. Rohan Paul, creator of the SmartCrane
Rohan Paul, a 30-year-old post-doctoral fellow at MIT, has created a Rs. 3,250 obstacle-detection system for the visually challenged called ‘SmartCane’. It was first tested in 2012 and users reported 95% fewer collisions. The SmartCane has since been used by 10,000 people. The idea came to him in 2005 when he went to the National Association for the Blind while studying at IIT.
“In 2005, I was at the Indian Institute of Technology in Delhi as an undergraduate. As part of a course intended to design solutions for real-life challenges, we visited the National Association for the Blind in Delhi,” Paul told Technology Review. “We heard stories of how people with blindness get hurt when out walking-abruptly hitting open windows, tree branches, or vehicles. It creates so much fear that they are reluctant to step out without assistance.”
Paul has rightly termed his device for the blind a “people’s product” and “a humble tribute to the Mahatma”.
Click here for Rohan Paul’s MIT Technology review profile.
3. Saurabh Srivastava, researcher at Xerox India
Saurabh Srivastava, 30, a researcher at Xerox India, who is currently experimenting with technologies for people with little or no literacy so that they can obtain information and use online services by voice and gestural interfaces. Recently he created a platform for pregnant women, to discuss medical problems via a web interface that help them to access various free tests and services available to them.
“Having spent all my life in the developing world, I have been surrounded by people who are marginalized and underserved,” said Srivastava. “I see the huge potential technology can play to enhance the lives of this population that is less-literate or less-digital. Compassion drives me to design and innovate taking into account the unique needs and culture of the underserved so, for example, a farmer can increase their yield or a pregnant woman can get better healthcare.”
Click here for Saurabh Srivastava’s MIT Technology review profile.
4. Aaswath Raman, creator of cooling without electricity
Aswanth Raman’s innovation is making life a little easier, he created a very special mirror, using nanoscale manufacturing technique, that actually gets colder under direct sunlight, and stays around 5 degrees Celsius cooler than the surrounding air.
Raman’s mirror follows the same basic concept that leads to dew formation on leaves and petals in nature – only it is just a lot more effective, and able to keep cool even at the higher temperatures during full daylight.
The 30-year-old is now working on integrating the material into air-conditioning infrastructure and has a working prototype on the roof of Stanford’s Packard Electrical Engineering Building. If Raman’s prototype works, you can run your air conditioner without damaging the nature or paying a huge electricity bill.
Click here for Aswanth Raman’s MIT Technology review profile.
Cover image source – firstpost