The laboratory was created in conjunction with MARG Swarnabhoomi, and Institute of Design and Architecture in Tamil Nadu, which contributed over $2 million to the construction of the lab. The ICTAS is located less than 50 miles from Chennai.
“The research will become part of our global effort on energy-harvesting under the umbrella of a National Science Foundation Center for Energy Harvesting Materials and Systems,” said Roop Mahajan, director of the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science on the Blacksburg campus, in a statement. “Communication and interaction between the two centers, in Swaranabhoomi and Blacksburg, will ensure a seamless integration of research projects and goals.” Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe endorsed the new lab, saying that the research culled will immensely benefit his state. “We are crossing continents to meet the global demand for new energy technology development,” said McAuliffe. “The insights we gain and the technology we create all transfer back to Virginia, and we can apply those assets to build new industry, address U.S. energy challenges, and create a 21st century Virginia economy.” Guru Ghosh, Virginia Tech’s Vice-President of Outreach and International Affairs, said the ICTAS as an invaluable opportunity to conduct energy research and harvesting for the US and India.