Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration
- The scheme is a Ministry of Human Resource Development initiative that aims at improving the research ecosystem of India’s Higher Educational Institutions by facilitating academic and research collaborations between Indian Institutions and the best institutions in the world.
- Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur is the National Coordinating Institute to implement the SPARC programme.
- A set of 6 Thrust Areas (Fundamental Research, Emergent Areas of Impact, Convergence, Action-Oriented Research, Innovation-Driven and Humanities and Social Science) and sub-theme areas in each thrust area has been identified for collaboration under SPARC based on emergent relevance and importance for the nation.
- A set of Nodal Institutions (NI), from India, for each participating foreign country has been identified.
- The expected outcomes include tangible results in terms of large quantity of high quality research publications, high quality text books and research monographs, imbibing of best practices from top international academicians and researchers, and improved world reputation and ranking of Indian Institutions.
Why in News?
- Researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras are collaborating with their counterparts in Germany to develop new materials for green energy solutions.
- The project, taken up under the SPARC, aims at developing alternative technologies to produce green hydrogen in anticipation of transition to a hydrogen-based economy.
- The aim of this international collaboration is to develop novel low cost electrocatalysts for hydrogen evolution reactions.
- Conventional methods of generating hydrogen result in a large quantity of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas that imposed serious environmental concerns.
- Whereas electrochemical splitting of water, called ‘Water Electrolysis’ (WE), is clean, facile, and highly efficient technology for large-scale production of high-purity H2.
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