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Indian tech machine for rapid COVID-19 test results

Image credit: Ministry of MSME

Technology centres in Bhubaneswar, Jamshedpur and Kolkata are now manufacturing critical parts of a real-time quantitative micro PCR system.

The centres, run under the Ministry of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSME), are manufacturing the machine, which will provide COVID-19 test results in less than an hour. Normal test results can take at least 24 hours to be processed.

According to a press release, the machine was designed by a private MSME enterprise. The machines are compact and portable.

The teams of the technology centres are working in 2/3 shifts to supply components for 600 testing machines. 150 testing machine components have already been supplied to a private healthcare provider. The stainless-steel components have an accuracy of 5 microns and are being manufactured using state-of-the-art technology.

The coronavirus testing device is affordable to manufacture.

The technology centres set up by the Ministry of MSME play a crucial role in providing practical skill development training to more than to 200,000 youth and industry workforce every year, the release claimed.

The 18 existing technology centres provide technical support to industries through the design and manufacturing of tools, precision components, mould and dies, forging and foundry, electronics, electrical measuring instruments, fragrance and flavour, glass, footwear, and sports goods.

Some of these centres, apart from providing design, development, and manufacturing support to MSME’s for complex tools, also create parts and components for strategic sectors like defense and aerospace for their research requirements.

The technology centres have been active in the present COVID-19 crisis, working on supporting the manufacturing of medical equipment, PPEs, masks, and sanitisers.

The release noted that the objectives of MSME technology centres are:

  • To impart long-term and short-term training to workers in tool and die making courses with the latest technologies (and other allied engineering trades).
  • To provide consultancy services primarily to MSME units in the field of tool engineering aimed at improving the productivity of the MSME Units.
  • To provide common facility services in precision machining, heat treatment, and other technical engineering know-how in tooling to MSMEs across the country.
  • To design and manufacture moulds, tools, dies, jigs, fixtures, etc. of high-precision quality.

In the fight against the virus, the government recently developed a mobile application that enables people to assess their health and the risk of catching COVID-19.

As OpenGov reported earlier, Aarogya Setu will calculate this based on a person’s interaction with others, using cutting-edge Bluetooth technology, algorithms, and artificial intelligence.

The government has urged its citizens to download the mobile application, which is designed to keep the user informed, in case they cross paths with someone who has tested positive.

The user, after installing the Aarogya Setu app, is asked to answer a number of questions. In case some of the answers suggest COVID-19 symptoms, the information will be sent to a government server.

The data will then help the government take effective steps and initiate the isolation procedure if necessary. It also alerts the user if they come in close proximity with a person who has tested positive.


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