'Industries Must Lend Support to Coach Youth in Car-making'
By V NarayanaMurthi | Published: 17th August 2014 06:00 AM |
VELLORE: Like in the US, big companies in India should come forward to provide students with better access to technology, components, materials and technical inputs to design cars for competitions. This was the opinion of Dr Dale Alan Wilson, faculty advisor at the Tennessee Technological University (TTU), USA, who interacted with a group of reporters on the sidelines of the one-day international workshop on BAJA SAE-India 2015 at VIT on Saturday.
The professor said TTU had the geographical advantage of being close to the automobile industry hub. Many of the industries such as DENSO, Cummins, which have huge manufacturing facilities, were sponsoring internships for TTU students while promoting the competitions of car designs in a big way.
Since many of the car giants were in the vicinity, the students of TTU had better access to the latest technology in the field of automotive engineering, which is quite a contrast to students in India. Since the car culture is still young in India with highways coming only recently to the country, youngsters here have to catch up with understanding various aspects of car design.
According to him, TTU began promoting BAJA competition activities among the students since 1988 as the local people had a lot of involvement and passion for car design. Three competitions were held in the USA every year, including one for the students of other countries, to design all-terrain vehicles. Around 150 engineering colleges from across the USA were participating in these events every year on a regular basis. The TTU students have won 12 times in the BAJA competitions so far. ‘With this expertise our students have volunteered to train students from India to get them prepared to compete with others, he added.
As we work more on the design aspects of the all-terrain cars, the models designed by students were getting much lighter, stronger, safer and affordable, he noted. These designs were being developed into business models by car companies, he added. The industry-academia interaction was stronger in the USA, which made exchange of ideas, prototyping and validation of designs easier and more focused, he said.