Manhole-cleaning robot completes trial run

Team behind Bandicoot. (Picture courtesy: Scroll)
Team behind Bandicoot. (Picture courtesy: Scroll)

Manhole-cleaning robot Bandicoot successfully completes trial run in Thiruvananthapuram

The spider-shaped robot developed by a team of engineers in Kerala to clean manholes has successfully completed a trial run in Thiruvananthapuram. Christened "Bandicoot", the robot is capable of cleaning manholes and sewers with precision, thereby eliminating the need for human intervention. It takes the robot 15 minutes to clean small sewers; unclogging bigger ones require around 45 minutes. Following the successful test run, the Kerala water authority has decided to use Bandicoot to clean all sewers in the capital.

ISRO’s Antrix signs MoU with ATREE for integrated conservation and management of Vembanad Lake

ISRO's commercial arm Antrix Corporation Limited has signed a memorandum with Bengaluru-based Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE) for integrated conservation and management of Vembanad Lake in Kerala. The lake, fed by 10 rivers, is a designated Ramsar site and is India’s largest wetland. ANTRIX will fund a three-year initiative, to support conservation efforts by local people and fishers under its CSR commitments. 

No Veeranam water for Chennai city as tank water levels drop 

The supply of water to Chennai from the Veeranam tank in neighbouring Cuddalore district has been stopped owing to low storage levels. The water level stood at two to three feet as against the tank's maximum of 47.5 feet. The tank has not been receiving inflow from the Mettur dam, which resulted in the drop in water levels. The Public Works Department, however, proposes to quench Chennai's thirst by supplying water drawn from Paravanar River instead.

Gujarat water supply management highly skewed in urban areas, says CEPT study

The Performance Assessment System of water resources conducted by CEPT University finds Gujarat's urban water supply management to be highly skewed. Studies point to a great deal of inequity and a lack of accountability, in terms of both groundwater and surface water exploitation in the state's urban pockets. Bigger municipal corporations and more affluent localities have been found to end up with more water.

Unique membrane developed by BARC makes it possible to design low-cost water purification technologies

BARC has developed a unique membrane-based low-maintenance water purifier which does not require electricity to function. These portable purifiers are touted to be the perfect solution for small-scale entrepreneurs as one unit is capable of supplying water to four other households apart from the one it's installed in. A ‘tabletop’ model for double filtration fit for rural areas has been designed in addition to charged nano-filtration units and spiral systems for desalination. 

This is a roundup of important news from February 27-March 5, 2018. Also, read the policy matters this week.