In this swift changing competitive world, the technological revolution plays a crucial role in handling the lives of human beings in a very effective, reliable and safe manner. Towards this, the niche field of biochemical engineering and biotechnology is a pioneer milestone, leading to a multidimensional scope of research and development activities which touch the lives of a common man in significant ways. The School of Biochemical Engineering at Indian Institute of Technology (BHU) offers a unique, dynamic and challenging course to students who are interested in pursuing the activities pertaining engineering applications of biochemicals and biotechnology. Biochemical Engineering is a highly interdisciplinary branch of science, which has paved new approach in the field of Fermentation technology, Bio-pharmaceutics and Food Industry, Metabolic engineering and Environmental-Biotechnology, etc. Biochemical Engineering has pioneered the development of low-energy renewable green technology to replace the existing energy-based and waste intensive conventional technology. Bio-engineered and biodegradable plastics offer easy solutions to the world’s growing waste disposal problems.
The Integrated dual degree course (IDD) in Biochemical Engineering emphasizes mainly on the emerging input to engineering aspects of biotechnology. It relies heavily on Enzyme Engineering, Bioreactor Design, Chemical Engineering, Down Stream Processing and Bioseparation Engineering. Due importance is given to Microbiology, Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, Genetic Engineering and Microbial/Plant/Animal Biotechnology. The importance will also be given to new areas viz. Bioinformatics, Immunology, Nanobiotechnology, IPR in biotechnology and the like. The main objective of the programme is to generate new brand of students with the knowledge of both biology and engineering who can deal with the problems related to the biotechnological industries, R&D organizations and they may also be outstanding input to the academic institutions.
The School of Biochemical Engineering at IIT (BHU), established in 1986, has transformed into a centre of excellence with state of the art technology and well equipped laboratories with active contribution in research and development. Recently the School has witnessed the inaugural function of its new building on March 26, 2014, dovetailed with a national seminar on “National Conference on New Horizon in Healthcare, Environment, Food and Bio-chemicals”. This conference was aimed to encourage and conduct collaborative interdisciplinary research by bringing academicians, researchers and personnel from industrial background and students together on a common platform to share their experience and expertise in order to augment the knowledge, discussing the recent advancement in the field of Biochemical Engineering.
The Biotechnology sector is a fast growing knowledge-based field in India. Institutes like Indian Institute of Science (IISc), National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS), Tata Institute of Fundamental Research(TIFR), JNCASR are some of the excellent institutes for further studies in India. Though the core placements in this field are not very encouraging at present in India owing to this being a very niche yet novel field. However scope for higher studies and placements abroad pretty high. The 5 years IDD course demands and promotes highly intensive research and development activities, however, the students get ample time towards preparation of IAS, CAT and Computer programming if they are not highly interested in this research based field.
Overall, the course is a unique blend of engineering applications and abstract engineering which would prove to be a fruitful experience for the students taking it up.
– Aseem Gosain, Senior Undergraduate