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Take to nanotech
May, 28th 2008

With India being one of the fastest-developing economies in the world, its reputation as a centre of scientific excellence is growing too. This means that career options in research and development (R&D) are increasing manifold. One such field that is gaining popularity is nanotechnology.

With the international market for nanotech products and applications projected to grow in the next decade to over $600 billion annually, India is poised for a bright future in R&D.

Last year, the Government of India launched a Nano Mission with an allocation of Rs 1,000 crore for five years. The Department of Science and Technology is the nodal agency for implementing the Mission. Under this programme, a good number of research projects have been granted to scientists and research institutions.

Career options in nano science and technology are directly linked to the recent boom in industrialisation. Well-known enterprises in the fields of automotives, electronics, aerospace, defense or health are actively involved in R&D. The country is emerging as a manufacturing hub due to the availability of qualified manpower and skills.

The graduates of nanotechnology can start their career in textiles, manufacturing, electronics, automobiles, pharmaceuticals, teaching, etc, says
vice-chancellor of Guru Nanak Dev University Jai Rup Singh.

Besides, they can take up a postgraduate course (M.Tech in nano science and technology) and become eligible to appear for the NET (National Eligibility Test) in physical sciences. Panjab University, Chandigarh, and Guru Jambeshwar University, Hisar, are already conducting the M.Tech course.

The Government of India has authorised 11 universities and institutions in the country to start nono courses from this session. Out of these, three universities will start an M.Sc nano course, whereas others will start an M.Tech nano science and technology course.

The Government of India has sanctioned Rs 2.15 crore to Guru Nanak Dev University for starting this course. Out of this, Rs 1.30 crore has been released. The amount will be used for setting up laboratories and others facilities.Each student admitted to the course will receive a scholarship of Rs 3,000 per month and a contingency of Rs 10,000 per annum.

It is a four-semester professional degree programme open to B.Sc (non-medical) students with physics and mathematics as compulsory subjects and a score of 50 per cent.

The admission to the two-year course will be through an all-India entrance test to be conducted by the university in last week of June (From next year, the admission is likely to be on the basis of the joint admission test conducted by the Indian Institute of Technology).

The entrance test will be of 100 marks with questions of multiple choice. The test will be based on the syllabus of B.Sc II and III (optics and lasers, quantum mechanics, condensed matter physics and electronics and solid state devices).

There are 15 seats for the course and admission to the reserved categories will be on the basis of the central government quota.

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