Today the state government of Bihar, in the presence of Honorable Labour Resources minister Jibesh Kumar, signed an MOU with Tata Technologies to upgrade 149 state-owned Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) in a project worth INR 4,606 Crores (USD 617 million). The aim of this project is to expose ITI students to cutting edge Industry 4.0 technologies and create a highly-skilled workforce that is capable of securing skilled jobs as well as spurring entrepreneurship in the state. I’m extremely proud to report that 3D Systems is one of the many technology partners working with Tata Technologies to upgrade the ITIs in Bihar. This follows a similar project in Karnataka where we are currently partnering with Tata Technologies to upgrade 150 ITIs in the state.
To give you an idea of the calibre of products involved in these upgrades, consider this. Many engineering colleges in India have 3D printers, usually the rudimentary plastic extrusion kind, which are good to introduce kids to 3D printing and can produce parts for small projects. The 3D printer that 3D Systems is offering as part of these upgrades is the Figure 4 Standalone, a far superior technology that prints parts with an injection moulded like surface finish in a wide variety of production-grade materials, some of which are even biocompatible. This means that apart from printing end-use parts that can be installed in a real automobile and be used for its entire lifetime, you can also print biocompatible surgical guides that can be safely placed inside a human body for the duration of surgery. The Figure 4 Standalone is currently being used by companies for real-world production applications, not student and DIY projects. We chose to offer this printer to the ITIs because we wanted the students to get trained on a technology that won’t just introduce them to 3D printing, but would actually make them employable in the industry.
Similar to how 3D Systems is offering its best in class technology to the ITIs in Bihar, other technology partners are doing the same. Tata Technologies has made it a point to bring together the best products in their respective fields as part of these ITI upgrades. They will also develop a curriculum and place two trainers per ITI location to manage the equipment and train the trainers at ITI. This high-quality turnkey solution is bound to change the lives of thousands of ITI students in Bihar in the coming years.