There’s a lot more to Goa than parties and booze, the latest one being the love for robotics and electronics at the school level.
After completing his post graduation and working for IMRB for a couple of months, Pranav Rai Vernekar believed it was time for him to step up and give full time to his startup. He, along with his friend Vinayak Joshi, had started Inventrom Robotics back in college in 2011 to promote robotics and focus on R&D in robotics.
Their first product ‘The TechnoBoard’ Atmega 32 based Robotics Development board can be used to design different robots by connecting various sensors and actuators to it.
Stressing the focus on R&D, Pranav says,
Our main focus is on the R&D of technology that can inspire to invent. We are a team of young engineers who have a passion for all the stuff that is geek and related to technology.
Their efforts have got accolades in sanction of patent No. 2581/MUM/2012 (Provisional) by Government of India for the ZAZU wireless programmer designed and developed by them.
Both Pranav and Vinayak are alumnus of Goa Engineering College. In addition to Pranav and Vinayak, the current team working on Inventrom’s projects includes Dattaprasad Naik, Varun Verlekar, Llewellyn Fernandes, Jayesh Pandey and Viresh Vazirani.
Pranav’s GEC junior, Dattaprasad joined the team after graduation. He now heads the learn section of the company which looks after the workshops and trainings.
Inventrom’s team also has some very young interns. Raunak Hede is a student of 6th Standard at Sharda Mandir School and he is an excellent coder in embedded C and Python languages. He joins Inventrom in his post-school hours and is currently working on some of the projects based on design of Interective media as well as helps the team during their demos and workshops.
For a startup to focus on R&D becomes a big tussle without any capital. To ensure continuous working capital to fuel R&D, Pranav believed monetizing workshops would be the best way to go forward.
The workshops bring in a steady flow of finances which leads Inventrom to fund their R&D for products. Pranav explains
During my MBA studies at Goa Institute of Management one of our proff of Finances Mr. Ram showed us how it is more important to look at working capital for the startup to run rather than investments or assets. This learning has become the base of the financial strategy at Inventrom.
Conducting workshops was also a way Dattaprasad believed the team could encourage students and working professionals to start loving and exploring robotics. He shares
At Inventrom we love to share our ideas and knowledge with students and engineers. We always love to teach engineering students and hence have conducted workshops in institutions such as IIT Roorkee, IIT Kanpur, BITS Pilani, BITS Goa, BITS Hyderabad, Goa Engineering College and many other engineering colleges and have continuously received overwhelmingly positive response from students, hobbyist and researchers alike by means of feedback and testimonials. We have successfully conducted workshops for our corporate clients such as TCS (Tata Consultancy Services), Chowgules, NETZSCH, PSL (Persistent Systems Ltd.) etc.
Though now with some of their products already launched and the prototype of Minion Bot being ready with postive responses, the team Inventrom is looking for suitable investors in their firm.
Inventrom is involved in designing its first industrial robot, The Minion Bot. This robot is an industrial helper that can carry various parts and objects from one point to another. It can also act as a virtual conveyer belt. This robot is very easy to control by giving instructions via any computer or a smartphone. The robot transmits its own WiFi to which one can connect his computer or phone. It has an ARM 11 mini-controller, which does the major intelligent processing part. It has a Linux OS running on it. It also has an Apache server and MySQL for database management. In addition to ARM 11, it also has an AVR ATmega 128 micro controller, which takes care of motion control and sensor data input. One can record instructions to control the robot’s movement and then it can continue to mimic the same.
It also comes with powerful on board sensors which allow it to interact easily with external environment as well as monitor its performance. The obstacle detecting sensors help detect any objects or a human coming in its path and accordingly it can maneuver itself towards the best possible path. It also has internal sensor like temperature sensors, position encoder, to help it monitor its performance and ensure optimum performance. The bot can automatically understand when load is placed on it or when it is removed using the load cell present on it which allows it to work autonomously.
With Minion Bot on board, Inventrom is planning to target the manufacturing sector across the nation. The product is expected to be launched officially in November 2014.
Inventrom has also developed a low cost wireless sensor node, which allows data from sensors to be collected and uploaded on Internet via Raspberry Pi. They are currently working on ‘Internet of Things’ with focus on home automation.
Technoboard and ZAZU Programmer
To cater to the enthusiatic geek audience interested in Robotics Technology and Automation, Inventrom has come up with different products – Technoboard and ZAZU programmer board.
For those who love to build their own robot, we have Technoboard which is a powerful platform to build it. One can connect hundreds of sensors with it, run it wirelessly and manage the power supply easily. The most attractive feature of Technoboard is its simplicity of usage. ZAZU Wireless Programmer is another patented innovation of Inventrom. It is a giant leap in the field of programing a microcontroller.
Instead of connecting and disconnecting a USB cable to PC and robot every time you program, now you can wirelessly program the bot. No need to keep the robot near the PC because the cable is short or no need to even retrieve the robot from the field for programing. Just burn the code wherever your robot is. The programme also doubles up as a wireless module for communication between the PC and robot while the robot is functioning. So it is a programmer and a wireless module bundled into one device.
With MinionBot almost set up on the launchpad, Inventrom is targeting the manufacturing sector and automation industry to promote their industrial robot.
Inventrom has successfully built a strong brand in workshops and trainings inside and outside Goa.
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