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New Delhi : Union Science & Technology, Earth Sciences, and Health & Family Welfare Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has said that CSIR-AMPRI has been successfully adopting ‘Waste to Wealth’ strategy as the institute has developed radiation shielding materials utilising industrial wastes as raw materials.Significantly, a novel process for making lead free and highly effective shielding materials useful for the construction of X-ray diagnostic and CT scanner room has been developed utilising industrial waste namely red mud and fly ash.

Dr Vardhan was inaugurating the Centre for Advanced Radiation Shielding and Geopolymeric Materials and Analytical High-Resolution Transmission Electron Microscope Laboratory, during his visit to CSIR constituent lab AMPRI based in Bhopal on March 13, 2021. He also laid the foundation of CSIR-AMPRI Bamboo Composite Structure, according to a PIB release.

The Minister pointed out that the institute is working in the cutting-edge areas of advanced technologies. It is in the forefront during the pandemic time by undertaking research in collaboration with AIIMS, Bhopal, in the area of development  of rapid electrochemical based diagnostic for detection of SARS-COV infection.

Various geopolymeric materials were also developed by CSIR-AMPRI utilising Coal based Thermal Power Plant waste i.e. Fly-Ash, and three US patents have been granted on geopolymeric materials.

A unique Centre for Advanced Radiation Shielding and Geopolymeric Materials with a total area of 455.52 Sq.m and Carpet Area of 906.24 Sq.m is being established. The advances in geopolymeric materials will accelerate strategic applications such as development  of Thermal Resistant Geopolymeric Concrete for Missile /Rocket Launching Pad and development of Geopolymeric Bulletproof Concrete for Bunkers; development of Graphene-Induced Geopolymeric Concrete and Geopolymeric Radiation Shielding Concrete. In addition, it will also have advanced conventional applications such as development and upscaling of ready mix Geopolymeric Concrete for road applications and structural applications; development of Roller-Compacted Geopolymeric Concrete, and development of pre-stressed Geopolymeric Concrete components.

Dr Vardhan expressed the hope that the Centre  will enhance the knowledge for understanding the mechanism of Radiation Shielding and improvement in engineering properties of developed materials. It will facilitate upscaling of technologies in this area and provide technological support to Indian industry. Reiterating the “Waste to Wealth” theme, Dr Vardhan also released the fly ash compendium.

Another major facility inaugurated by Dr Vardhan at CSIR-AMPRI was the Analytical High-Resolution Transmission Electron Microscope Laboratory. This laboratory houses Scanning Transmission Electron Microscope (STEM) with High-Angle Annular Dark Field Detector (HAADF) and Energy Dispersive Spectrometer (EDS) along with TEM sample preparation equipment such as, Ion milling system, Ultrasonic disc cutter, Dimple grinder, Disk punch, lapping disk and Diamond saw.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Avanish Kumar Srivastava, Director, CSIR-AMPRI, noted that these advanced instruments in CSIR-AMPRI could throw light on the morphological, structural,and compositional analysis of advanced materials developed at CSIR-AMPRI. This facility will not only enhance the research quality of CSIR-AMPRI but also neighbouring institutes of Madhya Pradesh to carry out innovative research on advanced materials and develop knowhow / technologies.