DeTect Technologies – Creating a Safer World
Gas leakages have claimed many lives across the world, and almost always, there is no forewarning. But what if we had a system that could detect cracks in gas pipes as soon as they occurred? This was the idea that drove Tarun Kumar Mishra and his team to come up with a solution.
Here, we present to you what DeTect, an IITM based startup, has to say about its startup life.
It all started when Tarun began working with Professor Krishnan on developing a new technology which could be used to make ultrasonic sensors (i.e. sensors which sense signals at high temperatures). As Tarun and his team further worked on the project with the professor, they wanted to come up with a system that could do live monitoring of systems, something that could work while a plant is active so that there would be no need to shutdown systems for this reason.
Soon, they began to look at the current scenario for monitoring in commercial industries, to see if there was scope for industrial application. It turned out that as of now, the sensors to detect cracks in the pipelines work only till 100℃ whereas fluids like oil and gas flow at about 250-260℃ in the pipes. So there is a shutdown once a year for the sake of maintenance. Such a shutdown causes a loss of about 10 crores!
Coming from a metallurgical background, Tarun devised a material that could perform these tasks at higher temperatures, and they soon got it patented. Gradually, they realised the escalating scope of this project and decided to make a complete robust system. They aimed to bring all the data about pipelines on a desktop helping the user understand all the areas prone to corrosion. They also realized that there are many industries which would be willing to install this throughout their plant because the whole plant has high temperature fluids going around.
Gradually, this team of students emerged as the co-founders of Detect Technologies. By inculcating their dream into their juniors (3rd and 4th year undergraduates of IITM), the co-founders started focusing on managing the startup, and let their juniors take care of the underlying technology.
They came out as a company with two products, one for the internal thickness of pipelines and the second was for everything big, large volume. Through the first product, Detect Technologies plans to monitor the thickness of any high temperature pipeline. Meanwhile, through the latter product, the company is attempting to solve another important problem faced on-ground; the problem of inspecting and monitoring assets that are hard to reach. For 200 meter towers and pipelines which stretch for hundreds of kilometers, to do a quick visual or thermal inspection, kilometers of scaffoldings would have to be built, and moreover, a person would have to climb on these scaffoldings to do the inspection. Detect plans to simplify this by using a drone. The inspection drone would do a 3D reconstruction of these pipelines, stacks, and columns.
Using a drone for this purpose would not only cut down on tedious and often dangerous labour, but would also significantly increase efficiency and the ease of conducting periodic inspections. For example, high volume assets similar to the ones mentioned above usually take up to 5 days to manually inspect, and using a drone cuts this inspection time down to about 3 hours, which is a huge difference in terms of both time and money.
In the future, Detect aims to be a point of source to act as a complete solution provider to the industry.
Over the last decade, the world has seen a shift towards e-commerce and software-based Considering that they already have an intent of purchase from a major oil company for several hundred centers, the future of Detect is reasonably bright. After this, they plan to expand to other centers and other companies across India. Currently, Detect is focussing on investments, which are crucial for the transformation of an idea into a startup. Since Detect is a hardware intensive startup, they need more funding than your everyday conventional startup, and hence, this investment period is a crucial stage for them.
A word from Detect for startup aspirants:
Hardware companies have gradually taken a back seat in the industry. However, in recent times, hardware-intensive technology startups have been gaining far more attention than their software counterparts, whose success depends more on execution than technology. Hardware startups have been looked at much more. For example, in the nationally acclaimed Economic Times Startup Awards, 4 IIT Madras startups received awards, out of which 3 were hardware-based startups.
Shaastra wishes Detect the best and a long life.
For more information on Detect Technologies, take a look here.