We are delighted to welcome Prof Vivek Sangwan to the IIT Bombay family. He joined the Mechanical Engineering Department this year.
Prof Sangwan completed his B.Tech in Mechanical Enginering from IIT Delhi in 2004. Then in 2010, he completed his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from University of Delaware.
His research interest is in the area of robotics and controls with a focus on applications such as control of legged robots and collaborative manipulation with arms mounted on quadcopters. He is also interested in development of medical robots such as exoskeletons for rehabilitation of spinal cord injury or stroke patients. Prof. Sangwan is also keen on robotics and automation applications for the agriculture and oil & gas sector in India.
Before joining IIT Bombay, Prof. Vivek was a Research Scientist working on robotics and control applications for oil and gas field at the research center of Schlumberger Technology Corporation near Boston, USA. He joined Schlumberger Research as a Post-Doctoral Researcher in Aug, 2010 on completion of which he was offered a Research Scientist position in Aug, 2012 that he held until Dec, 2015. At Schlumberger, Prof. Vivek led efforts in developing novel sensing and navigation algorithms for robotic devices operating inside an oil well. He also worked on active noise control for tools operating inside wellbores. He also initiated a modeling and simulation effort for Sucker Rod Pumps.
When asked about his future plans at IITB, he said that he would wish to continue working on improving control algorithms for walking robots and contribute towards making robots with legs as robust and usable as robots with wheels and tracks. He is also expanding into applications involving flying robotic quadcopters that are capable of performing cooperative manipulation tasks. Prof. Sangwan says that he comes from a farming family and says that agriculture is one sector in India which is untouched by automation. So he is interested in developing India specific robotic technologies for agriculture.
When asked about his plans on engaging students inside and outside classroom, he says that besides engaging students in the classroom, he likes to involve undergraduate students in research projects early on in their undergraduate career. He tries to develop in them the calibre, attitude and thinking skills to tackle hard unsolved problems. Through a combination of classroom teaching and research experience, he tries to make undergraduate students appreciate the connect between basic concepts they are taught in classes and the thinking process to tackle an unstructured research problem.
Speaking on his interests he is an avid swimmer and a yoga practitioner. Prof. Sangwan is actually a certified swimming instructor and wishes to get back to these activities as life gets more settled at IITB.