Having set up a major centre of excellence (CoE) in technical textiles, the Ahmedabad Textile Industry's Research Association (ATIRA) has been roped in by public works departments (PWDs) of several states in the north east region.
With the north eastern states taking up road building projects in places like Guwahati in Assam, Shillong in Meghalaya and parts of Sikkim in consultation with the Indian Road Congress (IRC), ATIRA has been tied up for offering its geo-textiles expertise. "The centre of excellence at ATIRA has developed an expertise in geo-grids and geo-synthetic sheets that are used in road building. While as a consulting body, IRC is part of the road projects in these north eastern states, the former has roped in ATIRA for providing technology on geo-textiles," said KK Mishra, chief executive officer at ATIRA.
What's more, the textile research institute is also involved in a road project in Bhavnagar in association with the Government of Gujarat. "The state government has issued some new guidelines for the Bhavnagar road project where advanced geo-textiles are being incorporated," Mishra added.
Apart from a centre of excellence, ATIRA also houses Asia's first testing and certification laboratory in geotextiles at its campus, which has been set up in association with German lab, Geoscope.
Set up at a project cost of Rs 250 crore, the CoE includes facilities in verticals other than geotextiles as well. For instance, the institute has signed memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with the likes of Karl Sruhe Institute of Technology, Germany, Bremen University of Germany, and National Composite Centre, University of Manchester, United Kingdom.
The MoU with Karl Sruhe Institute of Technology, Germany encompasses development of new technologies in composites, while that with Bremen University of Germany is for providing training programmes and certificate courses in composite.
Similar to the testing lab for geotextiles, ATIRA is also developing a testing, standardisation and R&D centre for composites at its campus with the help of National Composite Centre, University of Manchester, United Kingdom. Apparently, the R&D centre is one of the first in the country in composites, which is a vast area in technical textiles.
Meanwhile, working towards to enhancement of the composites vertical in technical textiles, ATIRA has also signed an MoU with the Government of Gujarat to set up altogether a CoE in composites.