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You are here: Home IITB Dean ACR November 2012 - Newsletter “Creation of New Knowledge is our key responsibility” In conversation with -Prof. Naik

“Creation of New Knowledge is our key responsibility” In conversation with -Prof. Naik


In conversation with Prof. N K Naik 

“The primary vision of IIT Bombay is ‘the creation of new knowledge’. As IITians, we have a responsibility to ‘create new knowledge’ and to ‘create a value based life, for ourselves as well as for others’. 

Niranjan Krishna Naik is an alumnus and a veteran faculty member. He is currently professor emeritus of Aerospace Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, India. He retired as the Head of the Department. His research interests are polymer matrix composites, textile composites, and aircraft production. Prof. Naik is a Fellow of National Academy of Sciences, India (elected 2004) and a Fellow of Indian National Academy of Engineering (elected 2005).                                                 

K-tree : Sir, please let us know in your own words, about your overall observation being here as a faculty member during the last several decades? 

Prof. Naik: Yes, as you rightly said, I have spent 4 decades at IIT Bombay. IITs are centers of excellence for education as well as for research. I am proud to be a part of this institution. The alumni of our institution have performed brilliantly in their chosen fields of activity and have also contributed significantly towards the welfare of the nation. Such creative activities are strongly supported by the IIT administration. However, the international ranking of IIT Bombay is not where we would like to see it. Our focus is to drive IIT Bombay towards being considered a top tiered technological institute internationally. And in order to fulfil such a vision, much of our efforts should be directed towards the creation of new technological and scientific knowledge recognized by and significant to the international community. This can be achieved by the combined efforts of the four pillars of IIT Bombay, namely, the faculty, administration, students, and alumni.

K-tree : You have spent an elongated period as a student yourself at IIT Bombay. What difference do you see and to facilitate the change in the students profile and in their aspirations seems the need of the hour. How do you think we could cater this issue?

Prof. Naik: IIT students are the crème of the country. The alumni have succeeded in their chosen fields and I am certain that the present batch of students will also continue to make a mark in their respective areas.  

In my student days, we were constrained by the limited facilities and resources and the nature of the work was very different. IIT Bombay now has excellent experimental and computational facilities offering scope for the students to perform high end research. 

One of the observed trends is engineering students moving on to other fields such as management, IT, finance etc. Although I personally do not find anything wrong with seeking new opportunities, this is causing us to lose brilliant engineering minds. Keeping in mind the vision of IIT, I would strongly encourage and urge the students to participate in creating high end technological and scientific knowledge.   

K-tree : Sir, How could we positively challenge students to indulge in creation of new knowledge and pursue engineering as their core profession?

Prof. Naik: IIT Bombay graduates that have pursued engineering related professional paths over the years have achieved great success, setting an example for the present young minds. The alumni have a huge influence on the student community. The guidance offered by them to the current students is an important contribution to their alma mater. This would supplement the already existing support system and strong encouragement from IIT faculty and administration. 

In summary, the primary vision of IIT Bombay is the creation of new knowledge. As IITians, we have a responsibility to create new knowledge and to create a value based life, for ourselves as well as for others. This can be achieved through a synergistic effort from all the four pillars of IIT Bombay, the faculty members, administration, students and alumni.


Professor Naik’s Some Recent Projects:

  Analysis and design of ceramic-composite body armours – For DRDO 

·         Analysis and design of turbine missile shield – For NPCIL 

·         Advisor on bullet-proof jackets – For Mumbai Police 

·         Analysis and design of 3D composites – For VSSC

·  Designed and developed high strain rate and ballistic impact test laboratory, internationally unique.


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