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The Ministry of Electronics and IT on Tuesday launched a Rs 4.3 crore contest for development of technology products using microprocessors developed by IIT Madras and CDAC. IIT Madras and the Center for Development of Advanced Computing (CDAC) have developed two microprocessors named SHAKTI (32 bit) and VEGA (64 bit), respectively, using open source architecture which will be made available for the contest.

Electronics and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad launched the ‘Swadeshi Microprocessor Challenge – Innovate Solutions For Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ to provide further impetus to the strong ecosystem of startups, innovation and research in the country, the ministry said in a statement.

This is the third technology contest within this fiscal year for development of indigenous technology.

The previous two contests were for development of indigenous video conferencing solutions, as well as apps in various categories.

“”Swadeshi Microprocessor Challenge- Innovate Solutions for #Aatmanirbhar Bharat” seeks to invite innovators, startups and students to use these microprocessors to develop various technology products,” the statement said.

The contest aims at not only meeting India’s future requirements of strategic and industrial sectors but also has the potential to mitigate the issues of security, licensing, technology obsolescence and most crucially cutting dependency on imports, it added.

The contest will culminate in June 2021.

The statement said 100 semi-finalists will get to win a total prize of Rs 1 crore, 25 finalists total of Rs 1 crore and the top 10 teams entering the finale will get seed funds totalling Rs 2.3 crore and 12 months incubation support.

“Open to students at all levels and startups, the Challenge demands contestants to not only tinker with these Swadeshi Processor IPs and facilitate them with innovating the frugal solutions for societal needs but also make available the entire home-grown ecosystem around Swadeshi Processors to develop the complex designs for catering to both global and domestic requirements in near future,” it said.

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