Good News for Visually Impaired Students in Odisha, German Made High Quality Computerised Braille Press Procured

Bhubaneswar: A new German manufactured Computerised Modern Braille Machine has been brought by Red cross Braille Press at Berhampur, the only Braille textbooks production house in the state and this will enhance the quality and quantity of textbooks used by visually impaired students reading in special schools and general institutions. The Department of Social Security and empowerment of PWDs has spent about 1.18 crore to bring the machine. The initiative by SSEPD Department
has brought good news for the visually impaired students in the state.
Initially there were only two manual Braille production machines: a) Marburg Braille Stereotype Machine from Germany (to prepare Braille master data on Aluminium sheets) b) Heidelberg Platen Press from Germany (to produce multiple Braille copies on thick paper). Even though the Braille data produced on Aluminium sheets are accurate and long lasting, it has become very slow data entry speed of one character per second, whereas the paper copies production machine is very fast, which can produce 10,000 Braille pages per hour. These two machines are still in service since 1986.
The SSEPD Department has procured this Computerised Braille Master Plate making machine from Germany, named Brailletec PUMA-VII, which has the data input speed of 16
characters per second. Now the manual plate making machine will be replaced with the Computerised Braille Plate Making machine, then the Braille Press would get substantially more production capability as well as data accuracy. It is to be noted that if the Braille data is prepared on Aluminium plates, it would ensure accuracy, as there is little chance of wear and tear and there is no chance of data crash or any such hazards.
Presently, the Braille Press at Berhampur has been producing textbooks up to Secondary level, but after getting the new machine it would take up production of textbooks for Higher Secondary level, as well as master pieces of Odia literature in future. The modern machine will be installed in the 2nd week of September with assistance of German Engineers. The machine costs EURO 1,30,745 excluding inland transportation, insurance and IGST etc.

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