The Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering organized a National Exhibition & Conference on New and Renewable Energy (NECONRE-2017) with a special focus on “Renewable Energy for rural India: the present and the future”, in association with Assam Energy Development Agency (AEDA), at Azara Campus on 6-7 October 2017.

The conference was inaugurated by Mr. Ajanta Kumar Goswami, CGM, Assam Power Distribution Company Limited as the Chief Guest. The Inaugural program started with lighting of the lamp by the Chief Guest, Keynote Speaker of the conference and globally distinguished personality- Prof. D. P. Kothari, Prof. Monoranjan Kalita, Chairman of NECONRE-2017 & Director of School of Technology (ADBU), Fr. Jospeh Nellanatt, Pro Vice Chancellor of ADBU, Prof. Shakuntala Laskar, Convener of NECONRE-2017 & HOD of EEE dept. and Mr. Mrinal Krishna Choudhury, Co-Convener of NECONRE-2017 & Addl. Director of AEDA.

The chief guest Mr. Ajanta Kumar Goswami, in his address, spoke of India’s target of 22% of renewable energy by 2020, which today stands at 2%. He also mentioned about the potential of wind power & biomass energy in areas of some districts of Assam like Dhubri, Karbi Anlong and Silchar and some small hydro power as well and concluded by talking about the commercial problems & their relevance and the need to solve them to make generation as well as distribution much more efficient. The overview of the event was presented by the convener of NECONRE-2017, Prof. Shakuntala Laskar, mentioned about the purpose of organizing the event, i.e., to unite policy makers, business leaders, students to exchange knowledge. The gathering was also addressed by Mr. Mrinal Krishna Choudhury, Co-Convener, NECONRE-2017. A Bosconian, Mr. Choudhury talked of the hardships & hurdles to make renewable energy available throughout the region. He also highlighted about installation of a Roof Top Solar PV System of 160 kWh each at the two campuses of ADBU, one at Azara, and the other at Tapesia Gardens, Sonapur and the need for the students to be involved in the installation of the unit.

At the inaugural function, the university honored eminent Prof. D.P. Kothari with Lifetime Achievement Award for his lifelong contribution to Electrical Engineering domain. Prof. Kothari, in his keynote address titled “Energy & Environmental Problems Facing The Third World And Their Probable Solutions For Sustainable Development”, mentioned how “impossible is just I’m possible” and urged the students as well as teachers to keep the good work going, in spite of the problems faced by third world countries like India eg. population explosion, voltage stability, need for private energy corporations etc. and stressed upon energy saving.

In the two day technical session of the national exhibition and conference the resource persons were Mr. Mrinal Krishna Choudhury, Additional Director, AEDA, Dr. Sisir Kumar Nayak, Dept. of EEE, IIT Guwahati, Mr. Biswajit Maji, GM- Rooftop, Ujaas Energy Limited, Dr. Bani Kanta Talukdar, Dept. of EE, Assam Engineering College, Dr. Sadhan Mahapatra, Tezpur University, Prof. Durlav Hazarika, Assam Engineering College, Prof. Kaustubha Mohanty, Centre For Energy, IIT Guwahati, Mr. Nilankha Chaliha, Head, North Eastern States, Indian Electrical and Electronics Manufacturers Association (IEEMA), Mr. Anuj Goswami, AGM, RAPDRP cell, APDCL, Dr. Sunandan Baruah, ADBU, Dr. Sandip Bordoloi, GIMT and Mr. Bhaskar Ganesh, NITS Mirza. They delivered invited talks on various aspects of new and renewable energy.

The conference was attended by more than 70 participants and 31 technical papers on various topics supported by new and renewable energy such was solar energy, wind energy, hydro-electric Energy, bio-fuels and miscellaneous new and renewable energy sources were presented in four technical sessions. Technical Session-I of the oral presentations was chaired by Prof. D.P. Kothari, and an Invited Talk was delivered by Mr. Mrinal Krishna Choudhury, Additional Director, AEDA in which he presented about AEDA’s initiative of “First Floating Solar Plant of Northeast at Bhurbondha”. Mr. Choudhury explained the various programs under AEDA & how they’re working the rural areas of Assam to expand the use of Solar Power. Technical Session-II was chaired by Dr. Sisir Kumar Nayak, Dept. of EEE, IIT Guwahati. Technical Session-III of the conference was chaired by Dr. Bani Kanta Talukdar, Dept. of EE, Assam Engineering College, in which an Invited Talk was delivered by Dr. Sadhan Mahapatra, Tezpur University titled “Biomass Gasification in an Open Top Downdraft Gasifier”. The last Technical Session of oral presentations was for online presentations and it was chaired by Prof. Durlav Hazarika, Assam Engineering College and he aslo delivered an Invited Talk titled “Understanding Nature and Electrical Energy System”.

Together with the deliberations of experts in the conference, an exhibition was held, to enlighten the students, developers and policy-makers on the various opportunities under the latest “new and renewable energy investments”. This national level project exhibition competition for the students was organized in two categories; where total of 26 groups of students from various academic intuitions participated. In Category-I (for Class IX-XII) of this competition, the first prize was bagged by the group of Mrityunjay Chakraborty, Ayaz Rahman, Aryan Pratap Rai from St. Clares Convent High School, Borjhar, Guwahati and was awarded with cash prize of Rs. 3000/- and certificates; the second prize was bagged by the group of Bhriguraj Boro, Dhiraj Kakati, Aman Rohi Lakra from St. Claret School, Borjhar, Guwahati and was awarded with cash prize of Rs. 1500/- and certificates; whereas in Category-II (for Degree and Diploma students), the first prize was bagged by the group of Queen Kalita, Arnaan Ronghangpi, Joram Henjum from ADBU and was awarded the cash prize of Rs. 4000/- and certificates, and the second prize was begged by the group of Marqueen Sun, Ferdinand Lyngdoh, Baskhemlang Rynjah from ADBU and was awarded with cash prize of Rs. 2000/- and certificates. In a separate Technical Poster Presentation Competition, the poster by the group of Ms. Darihun Sawkmie, Ms. Julene Seka H Thabah, Mr. Maitshaphrang Lyngdoh, Ms. Smriti Dey from ADBU was selected as the best poster and was awarded with cash prize of Rs. 1000/- and certificates.

Alongside the presentation and the exhibition, R&D practitioners, and Industry delegates were invited to showcase their equipments, materials, services, innovative findings, new knowledge and other practices relevant to addressing energy poverty. 5 companies engaged in renewable energy sector nationally participated in the Industrial exhibition, viz. Free Power Technology Private Ltd., Susconnect Pvt Ltd, Havells India Limited, Ujaas Energy Limited, Greenlight Planet India Pvt. Ltd.

NECONRE-2017 also featured a Panel Discussion session among experts from various fields who are directly or indirectly associated with renewable energy sector. The session successfully benefited the participants by creating awareness in them in critical issues of renewable energy sector.

It is worthwhile to mention 5 papers from different parts of the country were presented via video conferencing under the organization of Mr. Jesif Ahmed, Organizing Secretary of NECONRE-2017. The whole event of NECONRE-207 was co-sponsored by Ujaas Energy Limited, CNS Academy (Guwahti), MJ Consultancy (Guwahati) and Greenlight Planet India Pvt. Ltd.