TIIR: Heralding Visions and Innovations
Located on the northeast corner of the institute, spread over a sprawling area of 9572 square meters, the Technology Innovation and Industry Relations (TIIR) building has been an uncharted territory for the NITR junta. The facility constructed with the aim to act as an interface between industry and the students will not only incubate startups and projects, but will also house the placement cell of the institution. Team MM takes a sneak peek into the current state of affairs of TIIR and its future prospects.
The construction of the TIIR building began in May 2012 and was expected to be completed in the mid of 2014. The pace of the construction slowed down owing to issues related to the payments and transactions with the contractors appointed leading to the delayed consummation of the establishment a mere four months back. The inauguration of the facility was postponed owing to unavailability of Central Minister, Ministry of Skill Development, Mr. Rajiv Pratap Rudy, who was approached regarding the issue in the month of April. The institute is currently in touch with the head of NASSCOM, Mr. C.P. Gurnani (who is also an alumnus of NITR) as well as Mr. Subroto Bagchi the cofounder of ‘Mindtree’ to be the guest for the inaugural ceremony of TIIR. An official confirmation regarding the final date of inauguration would be declared later.
The Training and Placement Cell, which is currently operating from PPA is expected to move into the building by the next week. Difficulties pertaining to the shifting like availability of space and electricity have already been sorted out. The ARC (Assistant Registrar Coordination) office has already been shifted to the ground floor of the building. A 150 seater Computer Laboratory, which will also serve as the Common Design Unit has already been set up on the first floor. The facility is expected to be fully operational by the Thursday of next week as deadlines were overshot due to problems in the wiring of the building. The Central Fabrication Unit is also expected to be operational soon enough. Heavy machinery like a CNC turning centre, CNC milling centre as well as a 3D printer have already been procured and are currently placed in the basement. The instruments have a vertical motion during their operation which creates a height constraint in shifting the machines to the upper floors of the building. Prof. B.B. Biswal, Dean for Faculty Welfare informed that if necessary the machinery will be moved to the new Mechanical Engineering building, upon its completion. In that case the equipment however will remain the property of TIIR and can be accessed directly through the TIIR administration. The Department of Planning and Architecture will also move into the second floor of the TIIR building by the end of the semester once affairs appertaining to partition of space on the floor and electrical wiring are resolved.
TIIR building currently serves as a base of operations for about 15 companies. Start-ups like Estinno (Eastern Innovision), Grabbucks Internet Private Limited, Phoenix Robotics, Hostelkart are all currently registered with the TIIR building. Companies like Minz Chemical Private Limited, Datawise Management Service India Private limited also operate under the aegis of TIIR. Such companies and startups are provided round the clock internet connection, facilities of a conference room as well mentorship for industrial exposure.
As per current protocol the companies registered with TIIR will be given space in the building for one year which will be rent free. For further stay they will be charged a fee depending on the area they occupy, at a rate much cheaper than the market rate. When the company has come up with a product and a successful business model it can move out of the TIIR building. A technical team consisting of faculty members and experts from various departments has been set up which examines the fact that whether the company operating from the TIIR should be allowed to continue at the facility or not based on their performance, product quality, et cetera. The concept of TIIR is not limited to a building only. Companies working under the TIIR building are cleared for access to the various facilities in the campus. Further facilities in the building will be augmented as per the requirement of the industries registered.