Sustainable Manufacturing Group

Department of Engineering Design
Indian Institute of Technology Madras


Balkrishna C. Rao

Associate Professor

Instructor for PGPEX-VLFM (Leadership Program in Manufacturing – IIM-C, IIT-M and IIT-K)

Room #116, Engineering Design
Indian Institute of Technology Madras
Phone: (O) 044-22574660 (F) 044 2257 4732
Email: balkrish@iitm.ac.in

Research Interests

Climate change and other natural crises of our time are prompting a rethink among various disciplines of science and engineering. Consequently, the concept of sustainability has been stressed in recent years to innovate, design and manufacture products having minimal impact on the environment. In this regard, my group is involved in conducting research activities pertaining to Sustainable Manufacturing, Additive Manufacturing and Frugal Design and Frugal Engineering.

Research activities in Sustainable Manufacturing include: modeling traditional or subtractive manufacturing and use of severe plastic deformation (SPD) processes. Modeling of subtractive manufacturing is based on both fundamental physics and experimental tests to facilitate productivity improvement and also pave the way to newer energy-efficient manufacturing processes for combating the influence of climate-change.Such modeling activities are currently concentrated on the self-excited phenomenon chatter and other parasitic forces. SPD processes based on machining are being used to synthesize ultra-fine grained (UFG) materials with enhanced properties to aid in prolonging product-life for aerospace, automotive, marine and bio-medical industries. My group is also working on additive manufacturing of aerospace materials for fabricating intricate components with enhanced properties.

Last but not least, we are also working on a design-methodology to engineer products against the constraint of frugal resource-consumption. The frugal-design methodology holds the key to making streamlined products with robust functionality.

Current Research

Sustainable Manufacturing
Additive Manufacturing
Frugal Design & Frugal Engineering