Well, since I have no other thing to do this week, other than seeing movies, TV shows and listening to yet another new crappy album by a young wannabe star, I have decided to blog about my visit to NAL last Sunday! (Who wants to talk about that Ayodhya issue, its too damn boring for my tastes :P.. Anyway because of that I've holidays for 4 days in a row!! Don't know whether to rejoice or grumble!)
It was a technological exhibition day at NAL organized as part of the Foundation Day celebrations of CSIR - Council of Scientific and Industrial Research. So my classmates and me made it to their Kodihalli campus by 9 in the morning. To enlighten everybody what NAL is, its a high technology oriented institution concentrating on advanced research in aeronautics and related disciplines.
The day long event was hosted by NAL's Belur campus. When they first told us to board their buses and go to Belur, we were like WTF!!! It would take most of the day just to get there! And what will they show there, historical statues and tourism spots! No thanks, we have seen all of it! Then they put some sense into our very over excited brains saying it was just another campus some distance away. We felt relieved and went to the other campus and it was quite nicely done. Most of the popular themes being composite materials as the future of Indian aviation industry and prototypes and main frames of Airbuses, planes, etc. The NAL's technological innovations and recent achievements were on display as well. The exhibits included tapping of wind energy, power generation from solar ponds, support to India's space program, smart materials and structural health monitoring materials, among many others.
|Inside the Belur campus|
Collaboration between the different fields of mechanical, computer science and electronics was highly stressed at the event. Then we came back to the main Kodihalli campus' cricket field where there was the real highlight of the event, meant for most of the audience which consisted of parents and kids who expected some kind of flashiness and not just the boring scientific talk which went on inside the Belur campus. It included live flight demonstrations of NAL developed MAV's (Micro Air Vehicles) and radio controlled UAV's (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles).
|MAV: This costs about 4-5 lakhs!!|
MAV is an autonomous flying vehicle capable of carrying a payload and a miniaturized video camera which can locate nearby enemy troops, support military and civilian missions, weather observations and help in anti-terrorist operations, much like a drone. The different maneuvers can be done by a skilled operator. Anyways, if you have seen the air show on Independence Day on TV, its very much the same, except on a small-scale and there are no human pilots inside the vehicles, not that one can actually fit in even if they try!!