For his efforts to solve the issue of waste generated from manufacturing processes, Shashank Nimkar from the National Institute of Design (Ahmedabad) has won the James Dyson India Award 2020.
For his invention called 'Earth Tatva', Nimkar used ceramic waste called 'grog' from the surrounding production cluster and clay to make new products. These products are also made under a zero-waste manufacturing process.
Nimkar said that as up to 60 per cent - 70 per cent of the raw products are the waste by other manufacturers, the production process is capable of reducing mining for natural resources and landfills by up to 60 per cent.
"We use this pulverized form of waste, called 'grog', as a major portion of raw material, up to 60% - 70%, with a minimum amount of virgin clay," Nimkar said.
For his innovation, the youngster won a prize money of £2,000 (around ₹1.90 lakh) in the competition.
"I have always been fascinated by the idea of turning waste into a valuable resource. While working on design solutions, I often wonder what happens to the products and materials at their end of life. On this project, I kept asking myself how I can add value from the inside and not just from a functional or aesthetic point of view. That is how the idea of a universal material was conceived against making a product," he was quoted as saying by The Indian Express.
"Since day one, the aim was to make a closed-loop material that can be incorporated in a zero-waste manufacturing process," he added.
Shashank had started Earth Tatva as a part of his graduation project for his master's programme at NID-Ahmedabad. Later, he entere it for James Dyson Awards India 2020.
Of the 241 entries for this year's award, 93 were shortlisted. The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras and a team from NID, Ahmedabad for their project Drishti are the runners-up.