Second Gradution day address - 2015 Aksheyaa College of Engineering, Kancheepuram
Dr. M. Senthil Kumar

Scientist/Engineer ‘G’, Head Optics Division, ISRO, Dept of Space - Ahmedabad - 15.

Department of Space Goverment of India

                   Convocation Address by Dr. M. Senthil Kumar, Scientist/Engineer ‘G’, Head Optics Division, ISRO, Dept of Space. Dr. Akilan Chairman Aksheyaa college of Engineering, Dr Parthasarathy Principal Aksheyaa college of Engineering, Distinguished members of the management council, Faculties, dignitaries, ladies and gentlemen and of course graduating students:

A very good afternoon.

I am extremely thankful to my friend Dr. Akilan and Principal for their kind invitation for the second graduation day of Aksheyaa college of Engineering as a chief guest. I also thank my friend and classmate Dr. Mohan Kumar, Asst. prof. Presidency college Chennai for all his continuous persuasions that made today I am being a part of this graduation day celebration.

                  It gives me an immense pleasure and proud to stand in front of the graduating young friends. It reminds me the days of mine as a graduating student. First of all, I would like to congratulate all the students who are graduating today and my best wishes for future endeavours. I would like at this point to extend my regards and greetings to all the faculty members and staffs who have been part of the graduating students all those years.

                   It is a moment of cherish for graduating students. Graduation is a record of one’s small recognized contribution towards the endeavour for knowledge. After the receipt of the degree and out of the institute, one will be confronted

                  with many mind-boggling and teaser situations. A lot many avenues a graduating student may encounter viz., higher studies, jobs, entrepreneur. Several young friends of you will be graduating from various institutes spread all over states and country and, will also be competing for all those avenues. Earth is such a place that it always allows each one to have their own pie depending upon their deeds. One should not get perplexed with happenings in short run. At this juncture I would like to convey an important message from Swami Vivekananda.

 “ Take up one idea; Make that one idea your life; Think of it; Dream of it; Live on that one idea; Let the brain, muscles and nerve of every part of your body be full of that idea; This is the way to Success. And that is the way great spiritual giants are produced. Others are mere talking machines”

Many times what one studied in the college may not have any direct relations towards applications in an industry or enterprises. One should strive to synthesis the knowledge of education with the indented applications to derive the best quotient of it. One should know what role they want to play or they are into. The differences among the acts of science, technology and engineering should be understood. One of the ways those acts are explained as science brings out the knowledge of a natural phenomenon; technology converts the knowledge obtained by science to a usable entity and where as engineering is an art of exploiting the technology to suit the ease of human usability..

No time innovation or novelty ceases. Every routine activity can be value added or any limit set earlier can be challenged by innovative ideas. In this juncture I would like to mention two examples. One is about super resolution and other is about spintronix.
The imaging resolution of conventional lenses is limited by diffraction. Artificially engineering metamaterials now offer the possibility of building a superlens that overcomes this limit. Making a perfect lens that produces flawless images has been a dream of lens makers for centuries. In 1873, Ernst Abbe discovered a fundamental ‘diffraction limit’ in optics: whenever an object is imaged by an optical system, such as the lens of a camera, fine features — those smaller than half the wavelength of the light — are permanently lost in the image.

The loss of information arises because light emerging from the object’s fine features carries components with high spatial frequency — that is, evanescent waves that exponentially decay, resulting in an imperfect image. The ‘lost treasures’, as the subwavelength details could be called, are the fundamental reason for Abbe’s diffraction limit, which determines the smallest features that one can see through even the best of lenses. Practically speaking, this limits the resolution of all the imaging and lithography systems that are the corner stones of modern biology and electronics.

 Practically speaking, this limits the resolution of all the imaging and lithography systems that are the corner stones of modern biology and electronics. For more than a century, attempts have been made to overcome the diffraction limit. In 1967, Veselago raised the question of the physical meaning and feasibility of hypothetical materials with a negative index of refraction. He found that in such negative index media (NIM) a number of surprising phenomena occur, such as the reverse equivalents of Snell’s law, Doppler shift and Cerenkov radiation. These new phenomena do not violate the laws of physics, yet they challenge our physical perception and intuition. The idea of the NIM lens remained obscure for some decades, primarily because no such materials exist in nature.

 In the late 1990s, Pendry proposed that electromagnetic resonances in artificially engineered metamaterials made of metalloops and wires could be tuned to values not accessible in natural materials. The proposal by Pendry that is a slab of NIM can be a ‘perfect lens’ in which the evanescent waves, instead of decaying, are in fact enhanced through the slab. This offers the possibility of restoring or recovering the ‘lost treasures’, theoretically making a perfect image without any deterioration. These bold and provocative theoretical predictions have renewed hopes of overcoming the diffraction limit. In the past few years, we have witnessed exciting theoretical and experimental steps towards the realization of such lenses.

Electron spin can be detected as a magnetic field having one of two orientations, known as down and up. This provides an additional two binary states to the conventional low and high logic values, which are represented by simple currents. With the addition of the spin state to the mix, a bit can have four possible states, which might be called down-low, down-high, up-low, and up-high. These four states represent quantum bits. Spintronic technology has been tested in mass-storage components such as hard drives. The technology also holds promise for digital electronics in general. The existence of four, rather than two, defined states for a logic bit translates into higher data transfer speed, greater processing power, increased memory density, and increased storage capacity, provided the properties of electron spin can be sufficiently controlled for practical applications.

These new developments not only demonstrate the physics of the concept, but also pave the way for future optical and photonic applications. In those cases one can see that there are certain opportunities waiting for engineering and for entrepreneur aspects. Further, many time solutions to certain intriguing problems are available in the nature. Nature inspires one's imagination. It is because the efficient and elegant way systems evolved in this universe whether it is living or non-living things.

Many researchers get inspired and take cue from nature and try to imitate systems to solve certain intriguing problems. In that context, think of an imager (digital camera) having wide field of view (FOV) of coarser resolution for monitoring and the same imager will be inscribing a narrow field of view of high resolution for identification or discrimination. Imager has also the capability to vary the focal length/magnification. This type of imaging is called adaptive zooming and foveated imaging. This concept originates from the vision of human eye. Progress in technologies of fabrication of optical components and detector arrays over the years may allow realizing the above type of imaging in future in larger usable domain.

In spite of all said above, a good education inculcates the virtues of tolerance of divergent view and opinions and makes one spiritually calm. It inspires to use the learning to indulge in a healthy discussion rather than worrisome conflict. One who is intellectual and technically skilled without values for society, it is like flower of visually attractive but lacking fragrance. At this point I would like to mention about the ISRO. The sole mission of ISRO is itself usage of space technology for societal benefits.

To fulfil the mission, ISRO is embarked in development and launch of communications and navigational satellites, optical and microwave earth observation satellites and, development launch vehicles catering to various needs. In future, it is expected that globally there may be larger role for non-governmental agencies in the development and use of the space technologies and programs. It paves more opportunities to talented, adaptable, goal oriented, value based youths.
Before I conclude, let me wish once again all the graduating young students for a meaningful and prospective future. I wish that you will contribute towards accelerating the progress of the country and for a liveable planet earth. Thanks

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