The Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT) on Monday said it will roll out a master’s programme on electric vehicles (EVs) as the premier engineering school looks to train manpower and boost research in a sector that is very much in its infancy but expected to mushroom as costs decline and charging infrastructure falls into place.
Eight departments at the IIT will collaborate on the interdisciplinary dual degree course aimed at students graduating from the college’s BTech and dual degree programmes, the IIT today said.
“The content offered is carefully curated to build sufficient depth in each domain, starting from vehicle basics and going to very specific aggregates including batteries and motors,” said T Asokan, head of engineering design department at IIT Madras.
The students will study core subjects before taking up electives to specialise, said CS Shankar Ram, a professor at the department. “They would also do a project and can either opt for industry employment or pursue further research. The course provides flexibility to the students in choosing their sub-domain as well as orientates them towards industry and research,” he added.
The IIT said it provides its undergraduates with an option to upgrade to interdisciplinary dual degree programmes such as this wherein students study for five years and obtain BTech in a parent discipline and MTech in an interdisciplinary area.
“The objective is to provide greater flexibility to students, giving them the opportunity to take courses across disciplines and build towards expertise in modern interdisciplinary areas that will define the future of engineering and technology,” it added.
The college aims to roll out more e-mobility programmes having different structures over the years, said Asokan.
The move comes as a host of automakers announce a raft of EV initiatives amid the country’s efforts to promote clean mobility offerings to reduce its oil dependence and cut pollution.
Last month, TVS Motor Company said it would develop EVs with BMW's motorcycle brand in India. Also, startups like Ola Electric and Ather are ramping up investment in electric scooters. Bajaj Auto, Mahindra & Mahindra, Tata Motors and others are also investing in the sector.
Also, Maharashtra has decided to purchase or rent only EVs for government and urban local bodies from January instead of April.
The Indian EV market would grow at a compound annual rate of 36 percent till 2026, India Energy Storage Alliance projected last year.
According to a 2020 report by CEEW Centre for Energy Finance, the EV market in India is likely to become a $206 billion opportunity by 2030. The study said this would require a cumulative investment of over $180 billion in vehicle production and charging infrastructure.