Why is India in the news of late when technological innovations are reported. Around the world, innovations get reported, But there is a subtle difference, Indians do it in style and at the lowest cost, even beating the Chinese.
Three instances of India's clear edge in cost innovativeness over the rest of the world is being presented here.
One : When Indian Space Research Organisation sent its first expedition to Mars, in a time window of 36 hours, a NASA Mars expedition Maven too left earth orbit, in Nov 2013, both reached Mars after travelling in a solar orbit after 10 months over 650 million kms in Sept 2014. US Maven reached Mars first at a cost of $ 670 million. India's Mangalyaan reached Martian orbit soon afterwards and the total cost incurred was just $ 75 million, about one tenth what the US took. (Click for link here..)
With this major achievement, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) overtook NASA as the world's most cost innovative space power. India's accepted global leadership in inter planetary expeditions by being the first in the history of humanity to have landed on a planet at the first attempt and to this remains unchallenged and will remain the undisputed leader for many more centuries to come !
Two : Another instance of cost innovation was when the 9 million annual passenger traffic Kochi International airport in Kerala, India became the first and only international airport in the world to go completely energy neutral working on solar energy using a 12 MW solar plant covering 2.5 acres in the airport premises in Nedumbassery , about 40 kms outside Ernakulam in Kerala, India. (Click for link here ..) at a meagre budget of just $10 million !!
India's leadership in low cost, high tech and extremely high risk application areas remains unchallenged even to this day, 18 months after installation in July 2015 by any of the high tech and scientifically less advanced countries from US, Europe or China.
|The 2500 acre, $700 million, 650 MW Kamuthi, Tamil Nadu, India|
solar power plant, biggest in the world ..
Three : In Sept 2016, India snatched yet another crown jewel to add to its crown of being the unchallenged leader in low cost high tech solar applications when the Adani group in a record period of 8 months completed the commissioning of the world's largest solar energy plant , the 648 MW Kamuthi solar energy plant in South Tamil Nadu, India spread over 2500 acres (10.1 sq. km) using 25 lakh solar modules at a cost of RS 4550 crores, ie. $ 700 million.
The earliest record was the 550 MW Topaz Project in San Luis Obispo county in California commissioned in 2015 at a cost of $2500 million, 3.6 times costlier than the Indian project and 100 MW less power generation.. (Click here for more details through my blog on Kamuthi plant)
The world's largest solar power plant getting ready at Pavaguda near Tumkur in Karnataka (outskirts of Bangalore) is being set up at a cost of Rs 13,000 crores ($2 billion) by 2020. The irony is that the 2000 MW Pavaguda plant will be about $500 million cheaper than the Topaz project in California and that too generating only about a quarter of solar power as of the Pavaguda plant. Even the global champions of low cost products, China, has been a total failure when it comes to applying low cost innovation to high tech applications.
The world's largest debtor nation, US is also the world's high cost technology provider / enabler. This is a very sensitive area where US will start trailing India and China very soon, already started, failing miserably in the low cost competition to provide high technology to the world .. !Click here for the debt clock, US has a total debt of $19.3 trillion which is galloping forward at a fast pace setting world records and surging ahead ... Whether it is good for US or humanity, nobody knows !