Year-End Review -2022: Department of Atomic Energy
By PIB Delhi
Some Important Achievements of DAE from 2014 to 2022
- APSARA-U (BARC) – 2 MWth Pool Type Research Reactor, suitable for enhanced production of isotopes for applications in the field of Medicine, Industry and Agriculture, became critical on 10th September 2018. The facility is being used to irradiate samples for production of radioisotopes.
- Dhruva (BARC): The reactor operated at very high availability factors and about 4000 samples are irradiated in last eight years, apart from studies in nuclear and allied sciences by national institutes and Universities.
- IGCAR / FBTR (Fast Breeder Test Reactor): Using the indigenously designed and developed fuel of Uranium Carbide and Plutonium Carbide FBTR attained its rated capacity of 40MWt and is connected to the grid, producing 10 MWe. The cumulative Effective Full Power Days (EFPD) of operation is 128 days and the electrical energy produced is 23.5 million units this year (2022) and in the period 2014-2022 a total of 75.8 million units of electrical energy has been produced.
- IGCAR / Metal Fuel Pin Fabrication Facility: Sodium bonded metal fuel pin fabrication facility with high purity inert atmosphere glove box train has been established. Metal fuel pins of U-Pu-Zr were fabricated and the test fuel pins are undergoing irradiation at FBTR. The facility was dedicated to the nation in May’2018 by the Honourable President of India.
- NPCIL/ Completion of 53 years of operation of TAPS 1&2, oldest reactors In operation In the world.
- NPCIL/ Operation of about 582 reactor years so far.
- NPCIL/Setting of World Record of 962 days of continuous operation by KGS-1; Continuous Operation of RAPS-5 for 765 days (more than 2 years); Continuous Operation of 777 days by RAPS-3; Continuous operation of 852 days of NAPS- 2; Continuous operation of Indian nuclear power reactors for more than a year 42 times so far;
- NPCIL/ CAPEX of Rs. 14235 crore in 2021-22.
- NPCIL/ Dividend of Rs.1897 crore In 2021-22.
- NPCIL/ CSR expenditure of Rs. 101.96 crore.
- Radio-isotope Production
- BARC/ Significant contributions towards indigenous development and clinical translation of a number of radiopharmaceutical agents for cancer treatment at an affordable cost. These include 177Lu-DOTA-TATE, 177Lu-PSMA-617, 177Lu-EDTMP, 177Lu-DOTMP, 90Y-hydroxyapatite micro-particles and so on. Three different formulations of Yttrium-90 were developed and deployed.
- BARC/ Working on the philosophy of wealth from waste, about 1 lakh Ci of Cs was recovered and about 6 kg of this has been converted to pencils for irradiation.
- BARC/ BRIT Technology for recovery of 106Ru from nuclear waste and fabrication of 106Ru containing silver plaque (circular configuration) has been successfully developed for eye cancer treatment. These plaques were supplied to hospitals including AIIMS, Delhi.
- BRIT/ Cs-137 based Blood Irradiator, as an alternate to Co-60 based Blood Irradiator, was developed and introduced. The same has much longer useful life compared to Co-60 blood irradiator.
- Cancer Care
- TMC/ Registering close to 80,000 new patients and over 650,000 follow ups annually at Mumbai alone, it provides high quality cancer care to patients from across the country regardless of socio economic status and their ability to pay; more than 60% of patients are treated almost free of cost.
- TMC/ At National Level
- The National Cancer Grid – Created in 2012 with the broad vision of creating uniform standards of cancer care across India. Eight years later, it has grown into the world’s largest cancer network with 287 members, comprising cancer centres, research institutes, patient advocacy groups, charitable organizations and professional societies. Between the member organizations of the NCG, the network treats over 750,000 new patients with cancer annually, which is over 60% of all of India’s cancer burden.
- The NCG also partners with the Ayushman Bharat – Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana (AB-PMJAY) in ensuring evidence-based cancer care and rationalizing tariff packages under the scheme. The NCG’s work on Patient Health Records (PHR) was extensively used in the National Health Authority’s National Digital Health Mission (NDHM) recently launched by the Prime Minister.
- TMC has embarked on a major expansion plan that will quadruple its patient care capabilities as well as broaden its geographic presence in the country. TMC has now expanded to six other hospitals located in Varanasi (2), Guwahati, Sangrur, Vishakapatnam, Chandigarh and Muzaffarpur.
- The centre is offering technical assistance to various state government for strengthening their cancer care such as – Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, West Bengal, Jammu & Kashmir, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra.
- ACTREC, which had 100 beds till last year, has expanded to 500 beds this year (will expand to 900 beds by mid 2023), and will offer cutting-edge treatment with dedicated facilities for solid tumor chemotherapy, hemato-lymphoid cancers management, treatment with radionuclide isotopes, and the first Proton Beam therapy unit with three gantries in India and the first in the government sector.
- Starting from 740 beds in 2017, TMC has grown to 2450 beds (in 2022) and will further increase its capacity to 2700 beds by mid 2023. Currently, TMC treats about 125,000 new patients with cancer annually (approximately 10% of all of India’s cancer burden).
- The hub and spoke model of cancer care has been successfully implemented in Punjab and in Uttar Pradesh. This has been endorsed by the parliamentary committee on science and technology in 325th report, and the Parliamentary Standing Committee Health and Family Welfare in its 139th report.
- TMC/ At International Level
- With the creation of NCG “Vishwam” the international component of the NCG, the network is rapidly being acknowledged as one of the most influential organizations in global cancer care.
- The Low cost implementable research outputs at TMC has changed cancer care globally especially in Africa and developing world where it has become part of implementable guidelines. Three new studies in breast cancer were presented this year alone which have used low cost and indigenous interventions to improve survival significantly and has the potential to save over 100,000 lives when implemented globally.
- Nuclear Agriculture and Application of Radiation technology for food processing/ preservation
- BARC/ Till date BARC has developed & released 55 crop varieties for cultivation including the varieties of groundnut, mung dal, pigeon pea, Urid dal, mustard, soybean, cowpea, rice, jute and sunflower. 13 new seed varieties were released.
- BARC/ Eco-friendly and biodegradable BARC-hydrogel has been further improved to achieve water absorption up to 550 times of its own weight
- BARC/ 13 Food irradiation plants have been set up. Litchi Treatment plant based upon BARC-DAE technology was commissioned at National Research Centre on Litchi, ICAR located at Mushahari, Muzaffarpur, Bihar on 29th May 2017. Food preservation technologies developed for Jamun product, Sprouts & Sweet Corn Kernels, Stuffed Baked Food, Intermediate moisture shrimp, Fish soup powder have recently been transferred to different firms for commercial deployment. Gamma radiation technology was used to extend shelf life of 28 tons of potatoes from typical 100 days to eight months while retaining all quality attributes.
- Technology Transfer
- BARC/ Handheld low cost 12-Channel Tele-ECG Instrument, suitable for rural health care was developed. The instrument can be operated using Mobile phones via Bluetooth.
- BARC/ Radiation Hygienisation Technology for Converting Sewage Sludge into Organic Manure – First facility of capacity 100 tons/day has been constructed at Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) plant was inaugurated in 2019; 2nd plant coming-up at Indore MoU signed with Pune Municipal Corporation for 3rd unit.
- BARC/ Bhabha Kavach – A series of specially designed Bullet Proof Jackets (BPJs) that utilize indigenously developed Hot-Pressed Boron Carbide (HPBC) and Carbon Nanotube (CNT) technologies. The technology for manufacture of Bhabha Kavach was transferred to M/s MIDHANI in April 2017 and 3 more reputed companies. Level III+ Bhabha Kavach successfully qualified tests for the Central Armed Police team and the BSF team and successfully tested boron carbide-CNT impregnated polymer composite ballistic armour for Level IV threat.
- BARC/ Nisargruna – Technology for Hygienic Processing & Disposal of Solid Biodegradable Waste: Nisargruna was implemented in many cities including Matheran Municipal council as a part of Swacchha Bharat Abhiyan. Kannur village in Kerala has installed 1000 kg of waste per day Nisargruna plant. Nisarguna plant produced biogas is used as a fuel in kitchen.
- BARC/ Water Treatment technologies – Deployed in many villages in the state of Maharastra, West Bengal, Bihar and Orissa.
- BARC/ Thermal seawater desalination technology based on Multi Effect Distillation-Thermal Vapour Compression – technology transferred to two entrepreneurs.
- Civil Nuclear Cooperation:
Civil Nuclear cooperation agreement for peaceful application of nuclear energy were signed with Japan, Great Britain, Vietnam, Bangladesh.
Tripartite MoU signed between Russia, Bangladesh and India for establishing Nuclear Power Plant in Bangladesh.
Nuclear Research & Development cooperation agreement signed with Canada.
- Publications & Patents
- CEBS/ More than 516 scientific papers have been published.
- In the last 8 years, DAE has filed approximately 156 patents (80 are Indian, 13 are PCT applications and 63 are foreign applications) out of which about 121 have been granted so far. The rest are in various stages of examination.
- IOP/ Published more than 700 papers in international peer reviewed journals.
- RRCAT/ Around 120 M.Tech/ M.Sc students are provided training in the R & D labs of RRCAT annually.
- IGCAR/ An Indian patent (Patent Number allotted: 396872) was granted on 13th May.2022 for an IGCAR invention titled, “A Method and Apparatus for Block Encryption and Synchronous Stream Cipher”.
- IGCAR Publications & Citations: Publications of IGCAR has been only in good impact and scopus/web of science indexed journals. The publication and citation status sourced from Scopus Citation database is given below: (Source: Scopus, dt. 09.12.2022)