COVID-19 adversely impacting the socio-economic livelihood of the people, and with lockdown in place, students are using technology and innovation to seek practical solutions to alleviate the effects of this virus. In pursuit of this agenda, city based Parul University has been actively encouraging and motivating students to be engaged in productive activities during the current lockdown.
One such way has been through the promotion of various State and National level hackathons amongst its students. Joining the fight against COVID-19, “Toodle”, a team from Parul University, took part in one such hackathon and emerged victorious amongst the top 6 nationwide, in the educators and researchers category.
Fight Corona Ideathon, an initiative jointly organised by AICTE, MHRD, IIC & Forge as a way of promoting and encouraging innovative ideas and solutions which can be utilised towards mitigating the impacts of COVID-19. The spectrum of ideas and fields which were covered in this innovation centred platform include digital and distance education solutions, finance and economic systems, psychology and mental health during the lockdown period, practical solutions in healthcare and effective social distancing.
A total of over 5 500 applicants across India to part in this particular ideathon, where the Parul University team also participated and earned a position amongst the top 6, with a prize money of Rs 10 000, under the category of educators and researchers.
The idea which team Toodle formulated was centred around making use of aero technology to create a drone aircraft to be utilised within the medical field. “In a pandemic like COVID-19, attendants, caretakers and health care workers spend a lot of time in close proximity with the patients, performing high risk duties such as providing food and medicine to the infected patients along with the regular sanitization of the quarantine area. We proposed a Small Size Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) which is a type of aircraft (drone) that has no pilot or passenger on board, it has autonomous multi-point delivery of medicine, food and other essentials without human intervention. It can also do sanitization and surveillance”, said Dr. Harshal Shah and Prof. Rutvik Metha, Mentor of the Team who led them to the victory under the Educator and Research Category.
Keeping in mind the risk factors which the doctors and nurses have been exposed to throughout this quarantine period, this idea acts as one practical digital solution which can be used towards ensuring the safety of the healthcare community.
”In these pressing, i believe as Parul University we have an obligation to play, that is to contribute our pool of innovative student and expert minds towards putting forward practical solutions for combating this pandemic.We will continually encourage our students and staff members to engage in such hackathons and ideathons, so as to combat this COVID-19 crisis and the threat it poses to our academic, social and economic institutions”, said the University President, Dr. Devanshu Patel.