• Food storage silo designed by Mysuru lab installed in Ladakh

    Reporter: Morning Glory News
    Published: Tuesday, July 3, 2018
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    Mysuru: July 3, 2018 was a red letter day for the Defence Food Research Laboratory (DFRL), Mysuru with the installation of the ‘Modular Storage System for Ration’ at Nubra Valley in Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir. The storage system is designed by two young life science experts at DFRL – Dev Kumar Yadav, 33, and 34-year-old Neera. The storage system has been designed to help the armed forces store food and rations for extended periods in sub-zero temperature. The model of the silo was showcased on the occasion of DFRL’s ‘Open Day’ in May, and two months later, it has taken its rightful place at 10,000ft above sea level. The team from DFRL that went to Ladakh to oversee the instllation of the silo returned to Mysuru on Wednesday night, and the members are soaking in the afterglow of their mission. The Indian Army has been effusive in its praise for the silos designed by the DFRL scientists, who are elated with the appreciation they have received for their innovation. The modular storage system was developed under the ‘Project Soldiers’ Assist’ initiative. That the silo is the first deliverable product designed by the ‘Young Scientists Cluster’ at DFRL has only served to add to their joy. The Indian Army has named the silo, ‘Prati Nava’, which translates to ‘Freshness Beyond’. Dev Kumarv Yadav said that he had learnt about the difficulties faced by soldiers in high altitudes, and had decided to design something that would make their lives easier. “Food storage was the biggest problem that soldiers of the Indian Army faced at high altitudes. Since many soldiers stationed at such elevated zones were dying largely because of dehydration, and not bullets, I decided to find a solution to the problem,” Yadav told TOI. Pointing out that fruits, vegetables and food grains froze during winter, he added, “The silo will ensure that the food does not freeze.” Highlighting the difficulties involved in transporting food to elevated corridors, Yadav said, “The terrain is very treacherous, and the food is mostly airlifted since roads are blocked during winter for four to five months. But the silo can be easily dismantled and reinstalled at another location depending on the movement of the Indian Army.” The most salient feature of the silo is its self-sufficiency – a consequence of the use of solar panels. “The silo is insulated, and within the structure, the temperature will be maintained at around two to eight degrees Celsius. Panels on the silo will display the oxygen level, temeparture and availability of rations,” Yadav added. Neera said that she was proud to have been a part of the project, and expressed her desire to make possible improvements to the silo, besides fixing any glitches. “We have plans to design a silo that can store rations in all climatic conditions. I am very satisfied with my contribution to the nation, and supporting the Indian Army in my own way,” she added. Both Yadav and Neera expressed their gratitude to DFRL director RK Sharma, and their mentor Anil Dutt Semwal, who helped the duo execute the project. Since the modular storage silo has been designed for storing food in peak winters, Yadav and Neera will start work on new silos that will target specific climatic conditions. “We will develop a silo to help locals and farmers in Ladakh store their produce, and we also want to develop systems to help the army store rations in jungles, deserts and zones where the temperature is very high,” Yadav said. Impressed with the silo designed by the Defence Food Research Laboratory (DFRL) team, engineer and innovator Sonam Wangchuk said that he would visit Mysuru to study the system. Wangchuk met the DFRL team that was involved in the design of the silo in Ladakh, and urged them to design a new system capable of storing ration throughout the year, which can be used by the army and locals alike.
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