Startup Incubation and Innovation Center (SIIC), the technology business incubator at IIT Kanpur initiated Mission Bharat O2 during the second wave of Covid-19 to reform India’s healthcare ecosystem and address the paucity of locally-manufactured, quality medical devices. The MBO2 team, led by Prof. Amitabha Bandyopadhyay, Professor In-charge, Innovation & Incubation, IIT Kanpur and Srikant Sastri, Director, FIRST-IITK, and Rahul Patel, Head of Strategic Initiatives, SIIC-IITK, aimed to deliver oxygen plants and concentrators at a rapid pace, in collaboration with startups & small and medium enterprises.
In a recent development, SIIC donated oxygen concentrators to hospitals of seven states across the country, namely, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, and Mizoram. The successful execution of two national-scale projects – MBO2 & the Ventilator project mark the beginning of a golden era of indigenous manufacturing of medical devices & Equipment.
Commenting on the success of the initiative, Prof. Bandyopadhyay said, “SIIC and IIT Kanpur have a history of delivering quality in times of need. The success of MBO2 has ushered in greater confidence in the team, who has embarked upon the mission to make Indian healthcare self-sufficient.”
Under the Mission Bharat O2 project, not only mentoring and funding were provided, but the technologies developed at the Institute were also transferred to these partners to overcome the shortage of oxygen concentrators in India. Two variants of oxygen concentrators developed by two separate teams led by Prof. Shikhar Jha from the Department of Material Sciences & Prof. J. Ramkumar from the department of Mechanical Engineering of IIT Kanpur were not only licensed but also handholding support was continuously provided by the Institute towards the product development. The technology transfer was a key initiative in the success of MBO2 project involving Prof. Suman Saurabh from Department of Industrial Management & Engineering, along with the Technology Transfer office at SIIC IIT Kanpur.
Under MBO2, SIIC has facilitated the installation of 10, 500 LPM Oxygen Plants & Oxygen Concentrators of different sizes across Community Health Center (CHCs) & Primary Health Centres (PHCs) & some district hospitals. In Mission Bharat O2 the support provided by CSR Partners – ICICI Securities, Ansys & NTTData along with Manufacturing and design partners has made it a great success story The development of the Oxygen plant and Oxygen concentrators by a mentor which included engineering and technology experts – Dr. Arvind Rajendran (University of Alberta, Canada), Prof J Ramkumar, Dr. Shikar Jha (IIT Kanpur) & Business and Operation Experts Mr. Sanjeev Verama, Mr. Sanjay Banerjee, Mr. Nirmal Saraf Mr. Rajesh Raizada.
Mr. Srikant Sastri shared, “With Mission Bharat O2, SIIC IIT Kanpur has taken a step towards reforming the Indian healthcare ecosystem through an influx of quality medical infrastructure backed by an entrepreneurial zeal among young innovators. We believe that these manufacturers will form India’s manufacturing nucleus in the future.”