Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay

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This is a collection of articles archived for the excellence of their content.


Doctoral research/ PhDs

It takes 2 to 14 years to complete PhD

The Times of India, Nov 10 2015

Yogita Rao

Institute's media body compiles data since 1990

Researchers take an average of six years to complete a PhD at IIT-Bombay , according to data compiled from 1990 onwards by students of the institute. The maximum time, taken by two candidates, has been around 14 years while the quickest has been two years.All four were from the chemical engineering department.Computer science engineers, on an average, take the longest time (6.7 years) to complete their PhDs, while civil engineers take the least (5.1 years).

The students' media body on campus, Insight, has compiled the data available with the institute and analysed the time taken by researchers to complete their PhDs.

While the general perception on campus is that researchers take about five years, a majority of them, around 32%, have taken six years on an average. More than 40 candidates have even taken 10 or more years. The two candidates from the chemical engineering department who have taken about 14 years to finish their PhDs are deemed to be rare cases.

Among the departments, PhD candidates from computer science and engineering, humanities, mathematics, bio-sciences and bioengineering, metallurgical engineering have taken over six years to complete their research.Civil engineering and earth sciences departments have taken lesser time compared to the others.

Devang Khakhar, director of the institute, said that different departments have a different range of time taken to complete PhDs. It also depends on the subject of research, he said.

“The part-time PhD candidates, who make up for a significant number, take longer than the others as the candidates are also doing jobs. The institute does not have a segregated list, but we will soon work on it and have a better analysis,“ said Khakhar.

Though the students have taken data available with the institute from 1990, not al PhDs before 1999 have upload ed their theses online. So the data before 1999 is incom plete. The analysis is based on the data available online, said a student of the institute.

“There's a lot of data in the institute from various sourc es, and we thought it would be interesting if we present i in a visually intuitive way There's tremendous scope for such analysis, and it'll throw interesting insights into vari ous things,“ said Mihir Kul karni, one of the chief editors of Insight.


Hygiene, family ties, beliefs

The Times of India, Sep 01 2016

Hemali Chhapia

70% of IIT-B students skip daily bath, 40% wish to live on with pals

Six of 10 residents at the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay (IIT-B) showered once every two or three days, finding the “task“ taxing. A small 10% that took a bath just once a week and just about 30% took a bath everyday . This is one of the findings of the second edition of the senior survey at the institute, conducted by students, which received responses from 332 candidates of the passing-out class, including undergraduates, dual-degree students, MSc and MTech graduates. The hangover of hostel life is likely to linger long after graduation, for 40% of the residents plan to live with friends, 27% wish to go back home and 19% would like to live alone. On the other hand, 66% maintained close relations with their folks back home while 29.8% had a lower-than-average interaction with their parents.

While in Mumbai, they had ticked off quite a few items on their bucketlist.Some 52.4% had experienced the classic dream of every college student -a road trip to Goa with friends. Then, 70% travelled ticketless on a local train and 55.7%, on being inspired by the James Bond movie `Casino Royale', have played poker or blackjack.

On their marital plans, the survey found that 39.15% did not wish to dig their own grave until after five years; 31% were clueless while 21.4% wanted to marry between three and five years down the line. On religious beliefs, 39% respondents said they were believers, 21% said they identified themselves as atheists and 39% said they were agnostic.

Almost 70.5% of the respondents graduated as bachelors of technology . 33.75% received an additional minor or an honours degree or both alongside. In 2016, respondents had an average CPI of 7.87. 163 of them had a CPI greater than 8 while only 43 had CPI greater than 9. “A symmetric distribution across responses saw 35.7% wanting a decent CPI whereas 32.6% were unable to reach their potential,“ said Shreerang Javadekar, chief editor of Insight, the IIT-B newspaper which conducted the survey .

In terms of attendance, 39.75% said they would have attended most classes while 32.5% said they have would have preferred attending as few lectures as possible.Some 7.5% said they would have attended all classes nonetheless. Interestingly , 16.2% have never visited the institute's central library .

Separate plates for vegetarians, non-veg

Yogita Rao, Separate veg, non-veg plates split IIT-B, January 17, 2018: The Times of India

An e-mail requesting non-vegetarians to use “only the tray-type plates meant for non-veg dishes” has raked up a controversy on the IIT-Bombay campus. The mail also said: “Please do not use the ‘main’ plates for non-vegetarian dishes.” Every hostel has its own council and is managed by students. The mess coordinator of Hostel 11, housing around 300 students, sent the mail on Saturday.

Amid a fierce debate on social media on the issue, a user pointed out, “What most people seem to have a problem with is the term ‘main plates’. They say it is a ploy to make vegetarian diet the preferred one and push Hindutva agenda...” Ahostel committee member clarified, “The practice of using separate tray-type plates for non-veg dishes has existed for years. The mail was just a request that students stick to it... since there have been complaints from vegetarians.”

Most preferred IIT


Hemali Chhapia, Sep 23, 2022: The Times of India

MUMBAI: The cream of the JEE toppers - the top 100 - has overwhelmingly picked IIT Bombay at the close of first-round admissions of 2022-23, making it the most sought-after tech college, with Delhi and Madras a distant second and third.

Ninety-three of them have opted for the Powai-based college as their first choice. All but one asked for computer science; 69 made the cut. Others had to make do with their second option: 28 of them will head to IIT Delhi and three of them to IIT Madras. Going by the final count, nine of the top 10 rankers will pursue BTech in computer science at IIT-B. A similar preference for the institute was shown by 48 of the top 50. The other two students opted for IIT Delhi and IIT Madras. Of the 48 who preferred IIT-B, 47 chose computer science & 1 chose engineering physics.

Last year, 62 of the top 100 joined IIT-B and 32 IIT Delhi. Several factors are responsible for this preference: from geography to gastronomy and placement records to what coaching classes tell students.

Students know 4-5 yrs at IIT-B will take them to next level: Director At the close of round one of admissions on September 23, a look at options exercised by the top 1,000 JEE candidates reveals that Bombay, Delhi, Roorkee and Madras are top choices though Kanpur, Kharagpur and Hyderabad too have a sizeable representation.

Explaining the reason for most of the top 100 candidates opting for IIT Bombay, its director Subhasis Chaudhuri said: "IIT-B meets the aspirations of India's talented youth and challenges them to bring out their best. From giving them all the facilities to providing the right guidance, from accessing top-class education to getting the right platform, students know their investment of four or five years at IIT-B will take them to the next level".

A total of 2.14 lakh registered for seat allocation through the Joint Seat Allocation Authority this year. Of these, 1.96 candidates - 1.51 lakh males, 45,370 females and three from the third gender - have filled in choices for seats in participating institutions.

The total number of seats available this year are 54,477 in 114 institutions, including IITs, NITs, IIEST Shibpur, IIITs and other government-funded technical institutes across the country.

Going by choices, IIT Kharagpur has the maximum seats and variety of courses, said Prof Suryanarayana Doolla, organising chairman, JEE (Advanced). Analytics of applications received showed the lion's share of candidates opted for computer science, electrical engineering, electronics and communication engineering and mechanical engineering. About 30,000 students opted for biotech/biomedical engineering in line with the trend of the previous year.


2016-18: countries that accept IIT-B interns

Yogita Rao, Asian nations shop for IIT-B interns, Europe goes slow, August 20, 2018: The Times of India

US Still Picks Up Biggest Chunk; Japan, S Korea Increase Offers

IIT-Bombay is increasingly becoming a destination for Asian countries, especially their universities, to hire interns. While US universities still pick up the highest number oft IIT-B students for internships, offers from Japan, Singapore and South Korea have seen a significant rise in recent years. Moreover, data from the last three years shows that offers from the UK, Germany, France and Canada, though still significant, have been on the decline.

In 2017-18, the US offered 49 students — the most that year — opportunities to complete their two-month long internships. During the same period, Japan’s universities and companies, that didn’t evince much interest earlier, made 23 offers. Data shows that firms and universities in South Korea, which never was a destination for internships in the last five years, made 12 offers in the same period.

Asian countries are aggressively visiting campuses in India to hire students, said Tom Mathew, professor-incharge of placements at IIT-B. “Countries such as Japan are involved in many activities in our country; some have strong manufacturing units. There are agencies which assist firms and universities to pick Indian students. Their senior officials personally visit the campus and give feedback to students,” said the professor. The number of Japanese firms in India has been on the rise in the past few years and almost half of them are in the manufacturing sector. Their FDIs too have seen a growth.

On the other hand, firms and universities from Europe do not come to the campus, Mathew said. “They are established names, so students have to approach them.”

A student from IIT-B said there is a decline in the number of students opting for six-month internships. “Earlier, there were compulsory academic credits associated with internships. That is not the case now. Students used to work on six-month research projects, which are now cut short to about two months — mostly during vacations. The European countries are working around their own requirements and are taking time to adapt to these changes, whereas the requirement at universities and companies in Asian countries is more now,” the student said. Most IIT-Bombay students are picked up by best universities abroad for internships, he added.

However, international companies are not offering as many internships as universities as they prefer to hire from local branches.

Kaustubha Mohanty, former chairman of the All-India Placement Committee of IITs, said that funding at some of the universities abroad, especially in the United States, Canada and some other European countries seems to have taken a hit.

2016: 300% increase in academic institutes

Placements in Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, in 2016, till November; The Times of India, Nov 30, 2016

The Times of India, Nov 30, 2016

For a long time, blue chip companies, investment firms and startups ruled the first edition or Phase I of placements at the Indian Institutes of Technology . However, Phase I has seen academic institutes jump up the charts this recruitment season.

IIT-Bombay has seen a three-fold increase in the number of academic institutes visiting its campus this December. While seven institutes had signed up to recruit teaching talent in 2015-16, 20 have already registered in 2016-17 round, said placement head Tom Mathew. Most are Indian universities, many of them private and deemed institutions that draw teachers from top-rung campuses.

“Close to 10% of our total recruiters are academic institutes in 2016-17, which means a lot of options for our doctoral candidates,“ said a member of the placement committee.

At IIT-Kanpur, 15 acade mic institutes have registered to choose faculty members from among the masters and PhD students.

N P Padhy , professor-in charge of training and placement at IIT-Roorkee, said they were seeing a similar trend this year. “Generally , academic institutes visit the campus after December. Six institutes or universities have already been registered this year,“ he added.

Manu Santhanam of IITMadras said that a clear picture on the exact number would emerge only next semester, as academic institutes hire until May-June. “There is no fixed time limit for them, as they are mostly interested in research scholars,“ he said.

Prakash Gopalan, vicechancellor of Thapar University, said they had been recruiting PhDs from the IITs because the students there are inclined towards research.

Sandip Jha, chairman of Sandip University , said there were plans afloat to model their engineering school on the lines of the IITs. “For that we need the best possible faculty in the country . Hence, we have empanelled ourselves with all the IITs and the NITs,“ he added.

However, the IITs have not yet seen too many international campuses travelling to pick freshers. In 2009, among the many universities shopping for faculty members was Alfaisal University from Saudi Arabia, which landed uat several IITs and offered an annual compensation of approximately Rs 17 lakh, apart from housing and other facilities. Texas A&M University , seeking to recruit for its Qatar campus, came to IIT-Madras.

The remuneration offered by Indian institutes is less than half that given by their international counterparts. A faculty member at IIT-Bombay pointed out that “a very small number of MTechs“ take up teaching jobs. “ At the end of the placement season, it will be interesting to be see how many of these universities actually get serious students,“ he added.

Research and development

Oxygen from nitrogen generators

Yogita Rao, April 30, 2021: The Times of India

The Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, has stepped in to offer a quick and simple solution to the oxygen crisis. The institute, in collaboration with Tata Consulting Engineers (TCE) Ltd, has successfully carried out a pilot project to convert nitrogen generator plants into oxygen generators, simply by replacing the molecular filters.

Conversion of existing nitrogen plants will take only around three to four days, unlike setting up a new oxygen plant for medical use that could take at least 45 days. And, these pressure swing adsorption nitrogen plants are available in abundance in industrial units across the country. Conversion of a decent-sized nitrogen plant will cost around 10-15% of the total cost of setting up a new oxygen plant.

While the institute has validated the proof of the concept, the technology needs to be scaled up at multiple locations to help the country tide over the current emergency. An MoU was signed between IIT, TCE and Spantech Engineers (which deals with PSA nitrogen and oxygen plants) to finalise a standard operating procedure (SOP) to scale up the technology.

The technology is proven and has been in use since the 1970s, said Amit Sharma, managing director, TCE.

Conversion of nitrogen plants will take only around three to four days, unlike setting up a new oxygen plant that could take at least 45 days

2016, rankings

National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF): ranked No. 2

The Times of India, April 14, 2016

The rankings under the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) have been carried out in four categories: Engineering, management, pharmacy and university.

There were five key parameters on which an academic institutes were assessed, these include: Teaching, learning and resources; Research, consulting and collaborative performance; Graduation outcome; Outreach and inclusivity; and Perception.

Over 3,500 institutes participated in inaugural edition of these rankings, the process for which started in December 2015.

At No. 2 on the HRD ministry's list is IIT Bombay with a weighted score of 87.67. IIT Bombay too is among the oldest IITs in the country having established in the year 1958.

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