Friday, March 1, 2024

India Turning into R&D Powerhouse

More and more MNCs are flocking to India to set up an R&D base. Let’s see what makes India a perfect destination for carrying out research activities from the standpoint of technology and innovation -- Uma Gupta

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[stextbox id=”info” caption=”MNC R&D in India: A Quick Look”]

1. Meant to serve either the global market or develop products suited for the Indian market
2. Operating cost in India 25 per cent lower than in China
3. Tier-II locations like Chandigarh and Bhubaneswar emerging fast by offering up to 40-50 per cent savings on cost
4. Embedded systems related work growing fast
5. Automotive, healthcare, power and security driving the demand in semiconductors
6. Local advantages: Availability of highly skilled professionals in hardware and software, lower operating cost and growing Indian market
7. Local deterrents: Talent crunch, lack of adequate physical infrastructure, not-soencouraging industry-academia interface
8. Suggestions:
• Engineering institutes in India should impart postgraduate education in technologies relevant for the India market, like energy efficiency, automotive safety and security

• The government should provide encouraging tax incentives to help companies grow their R&D labs here

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Kiranmai Pendyala, head-HR, AMD India, says, “We are acquiring senior professionals from various markets like Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad, Pune, Singapore and the US. Attrition has increased in 2010-11 as the market is ripe and growth opportunities exist in the ecosystem. Hiring cost has definitel increased, given the market dynamics.”

Lack of adequate physical infrastructure (lack of regular power supply, poor roads) defiitely poses a challenge to operate smoothly in India and also in faster growth of already existing units.

“A lot needs to be done in the area of industry and academia interface to ensure that the technologies that students learn in the class are the latest that the industry is working on. While this has already started to a great extent, penetration needs to take place across the universities in India. Also, the R&Ds happening in the country are working towards providing solutions for the global market while the demand for unique products to serve India’s growing market is increasing. It is important that R&D players invest for home-grown solutions as well, which can range from solar energy for generating power to cost-effective connectivity solutions,” says Guruswamy.

“To enhance the R&D eco-system, engineering institutes should emphasise postgraduate education in technologies relevant for the Indian market; for example, energy efficiency, automotive safet and security. This will enable more relevant collaboration between the industry and academia,” suggests Shenoy.

“Most important of all is the support from the government to leverage this strength and continue to provide all help in encouraging more growth by giving tax incentives to help companies grow their R&D labs here, which benefits Indi immensely,” adds Guruswamy.

[stextbox id=”info” caption=”10 R&D majors in India”]

1. Delta India Electronics
Delta India has state-of-the-art R&D centres located in Gurgaon and Bengaluru. Besides core product area and applications, it is working on complete solutions for smart-grid applications and automotive applications. In core product area and applications, it is constantly enhancing the efficiency rate of power converters and infrastructure monitoring solutions for telecom sites.

Delta offers highly customised products and R&D facilities in India work on indigenisation of UPS and display solution products suited to India and SAARC customer requirements and environment. Developing custom power supply for storage and network equipment is another core area for Delta India’s R&D activity.

2. John F. Welch Technology Centre
GE’s John F. Welch Technology Centre (JFWTC) in Bengaluru is a multi-disciplinary R&D centre accelerating the company’s delivery of advanced technology to its global customers. The centre collaborates with GE’s three other R&D facilities that form the GE Global Research team to conduct research, development and engineering activities for all of GE’s diverse businesses worldwide.

Inaugurated on Sept 17, 2000, the centre is home to state-of-the-art laboratories working in the areas of mechanical engineering, electronic and electrical system technology, ceramics and metallurgy, catalysis and advanced chemistry, chemical engineering and process, polymer science and new synthetic materials, process modeling and simulation, power electronics and analysis technologies.

The centre has filed for more than 185 patents for R&D activities in Bengaluru and been granted twelve to date. In addition to GE’s global research activities, JFWTC is also home to technology teams from other GE organisations including GE Advanced Materials, GE Consumer & Industrial, GE Energy, GE Transportation and GE Healthcare.

“The centre in Bengaluru does R&D for the entire spectrum of GE products. At this centre, we are working on CdTe technology for solar cells, which is being developed globally,” informs Dr Mano Manoharan, general manager, operations, GE Global Research, and technology leader, manufacturing and materials, John F. Welch Technology Center.

3. Freescale Semiconductor India
Freescale Semiconductor designs and manufactures embedded processing technologies for automotive, consumer, industrial and networking markets and its India design centres build system-on-chips for these markets along with creation of digital and mixed-signal IPs and an impressive portfolio of low-tier to high-tier processor core platforms.


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