Bhubaneswar: The new building of IIT Bhubaneswar’s School of Earth, Ocean and Climate Sciences was inaugurated by Dr. M. Ravichandran, Chief Guest and Secretary, Ministry of Earth Sciences, Govt. of India. Dr. Mrutunjay Mohapatra, Director General, India Meteorological Department (IMD) was the Guest of Honor on this occasion. Prof. R.V. Raja Kumar, Director, IIT Bhubaneswar presided over the function. The new building will host about 30 faculty and 100 researcher scholars with multiple laboratories in its fullest capacity.
Dr. M. Ravichandran, Chief Guest and Secretary, MoES, mentioned that the SEOCS at IIT Bhubaneswar is mandated to provide the nation with the best possible services in forecasting the monsoons and other weather/climate parameters, ocean state, earthquakes, tsunamis and other phenomena related to earth systems, for the Public Safety and socio-economic benefits. He also reiterated that the school at IIT Bhubaneswar will encourage more and more young researchers for coming into the multidisciplinary studies in Earth System Sciences.
Dr. Mrutunjay Mohapatra, Guest of Honour & Director General, IMD, expressed satisfaction on the momentous occasion and expressed confidence that the SEOCS at IIT Bhubaneswar will play a major role in nation building and will play a nodal role for enhancing R & D activities in the climate sciences and ocean research. He complimented the Director of the Institute and his team for creating an excellent mix of teaching, learning platforms combined with world class infrastructure for attracting the best brains of the country.
Professor Avijit Gangopadhyay from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, USA, presently a VAJRA faculty at SEOCS outlined three golden principles for the general benefit of the humanity. They are technology, idea and initiative. He elucidated them with an example of cyclone prediction and human loss in Odisha for the period, 1970 – 2020. He exhorted the younger generation to imbibe these three golden principles in their lives. He also praised the role of the Director in implementation of the initiatives by his predecessors in realizing the dream of new building for SEOCS.
Speaking on the occasion, Prof. R.V. Raja Kumar, Director, IIT Bhubaneswar complimented the climate science group at SEOCS for collaborating with Institutes of International repute ranging from University of Massachusetts, Hurricane Research, Department of NOAA, USA, Purdue University, IMD and INCOIS and enjoying global reputation among all for their noteworthy achievements in predicting the course of recent cyclones such as Amphan, Fani, and Hudhud, very accurately about 5/6 days in advance with customization of latest models to Indian conditions. In addition, he also spoke about establishing the Bay of Bengal Coastal Observatory near Loudigaon to serve as a national facility for collecting real-time observations and monitoring the coastal Bay of Bengal. He also explained about how the best of world class infrastructure is being built at the Institute to serve the aspirations of the nation to have institutions at the level of the cream of the global best.
Dr. Hilal Farooq, the Head of the School presented a detailed 10-year report of the school’s achievements. Many alumni from different parts of the world, faculty, staff members and students participated in the program through video conferencing. Present on the occasion were Prof. P. V. Satyam, Dean Students Affairs, Prof. K. V. R. Chari, Director, IISER-Berhampur and Shri Debaraj Rath, Registrar, IIT Bhubaneswar. The event was held by following strict Covid-19 protocols. The event ended with a vote of thanks.