The amount of solid waste generated during 2018-19 was 1,52,076 tonnes per day, 98.50% of which was collected and 37.23% of which, in turn, was treated (Central Pollution Control Board, 2019-20). Waste sorting follows collection and indicates separation and storage of waste constituents. Sorting is done manually or by using mechanised systems (Click Here). Workers involved in manual sorting (and other steps of waste management) are exposed to risks due to direct contact with waste. Innovations in robotics are well-positioned to limit exposure to waste, and subsequently improve the quality of work and health conditions of these workers. These innovations will also increase the rate and improve the quality of recovered waste which enter production processes as secondary raw materials.

The August session of the Innovation & Science @Bharat series will have the following speakers from organizations in industry and academia to reflect on various applications of robotics to different aspects of waste management and innovations developed by them.

Webinar Date: 27 August 2021 at 03.00 PM




Dr. Prabhu Rajagopal, Professor, Mechanical Engineering Department, IIT Madras
Trained at IIT Madras (BTech & DD MTech) and Imperial College London (Ph.D., Postdoc), Prof. Prabhu has expertise in Nondestructive Evaluation (NDE) and Structural Health Monitoring (SHM). With over 25 funded projects, 180 technical articles, 25 filings, and a granted IP, he is widely recognized for his pioneering work on waveguide ultrasonics and robotics for the energy and mobility sectors and social focus on water, health, and sanitation. His work spans the spectrum of sensing and data management leveraging the latest innovations in analytics and Blockchain. Prof. Prabhu is passionate about service-oriented engineering education and technology translation, working closely with companies, agencies, and societal bodies in taking these innovations to the field. In this quest, he has also co-founded several Startups that license his IPs. Recipient of prestigious Early Career awards from academia and industry (National Design and Research Forum, Indian Society for NDT, Institute for Smart Structures and Systems - IISc & IIT Madras) and India's top award for young scientists (Swarnajayanti Fellowship), Prof. Prabhu's work has also been featured widely in popular media. Prabhu is an Associate Editor of the international peer-reviewed journal, Ultrasonics from the Elsevier group.



Divanshu Kumar, Founder & CEO, Involve Learning Solutions Foundation; Head (Solinas Integrity), IIT Madras
Divanshu Kumar is a 2019 graduate from IIT Madras and an entrepreneur focused on solving complex social problems through the "First Principle Thinking". Even as a student he was the Founder & CEO of Involve, an international award-winning social enterprise that develops agency in school students via Peer Teaching. He has been leading our effort on sanitation robotics, receiving an award for the best final year Masters' thesis on the HomoSEP robot for cleaning of septic tanks, from Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the 2019 graduation ceremony, and later the National Bio Entrepreneurship Award in the same year.  He has a passion to create more entrepreneurs to solve social problems. He was on the advisory board of Nirmaan, IIT Madras's pre-incubation cell, and mentors many student startups. Divanshu was also recognized among the top 16 young entrepreneurs globally by Singapore International Foundation. Divanshu has made a name in the social enterprises' segment and has given several talks. He has been covered in widely respected outlets such as Forbes, LinkedIn, Yourstory & other media houses, with a feature in CNBC Young Turks. Divanshu was also featured in a popular Tamil language motion picture, Hero, for his work on Septic Tank robots (credits section: Hero, 2019).




Mangirish Herwadkar, Director, Applied Innovation Exchange Lab, Capgemini
Applied Innovation Exchange is Capgemini’s platform for driving co-innovation with clients, partners, startups, and academia. In his role, he is responsible for developing the client’s business case for transformation by seeding emerging technologies like IoT, Wearables, AI, ML, AR/VR, and Blockchain. He is specialized in Design Thinking, Creative Problem Solving. Before this role, he led strategy engagements on Engineering and Manufacturing transformation and managed the “Factory of the Future” platform for Manufacturing and Automotive COE. He is passionate about mentoring startups and driving Tech for Society initiatives on a pro-bono basis.


Dhanashree Page, Head Of Operations, CSR, Capgemini
Dhanashree Page is the Operations Head for Corporate Social Responsibility in Capgemini India. In this role, she is responsible for designing and implementing operating plans for Digital Inclusion – CSR team in India. With the design of major flagship programs to her credit, she has also developed key policies in this space that have enabled vital engagements across the organization. An Economics graduate, Dhanashree is an alumnus of Tata Institute of Social Sciences in India with a Master’s degree in Social Entrepreneurship.


  • Presentation By Capgemini

  • Presentation By Solinas Integrity Private Limited


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