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  BRiCS: Build Robots, Create Science

BRiCS is an initiative for hands-on education for Indian Schools.


The BRiCS project is aimed at training / education at several levels:

  • Urban Schools
    To add hands-on exercises that create excitement in science and mathematics education. A good amount of the interactivity in these exercises will depend on relatively high-cost commercial systems such as LEGO Mindstorms. The school will need to set up a BRiCS lab (see below) which will also be invaluable for demonstrations during school exhibitions and other events.
  • Rural Schools
    To introduce hands-on science in rural schools. This will depend on a number of indigenous toy-making concepts that are being adapted from a number of sources (such as gears from wires by Arthur Hansen, toys from junk by Arvind Gupta), as well as others that are being developed by the BRiCS team. This will be supplemented by demonstrations and short-time loans of some of the more expensive toy systems as above.
  • Undergraduate Colleges
    To build on the innate interest in many students to build robots, to introduce them to basic skills in engineering and electronics.
  • Fraternity
    To introduce a programmable modular robotics system (such as LEGO) as a design conceptualization and rapid prototyping tool for the design, fashion, and engineering communities.

A Pipe Climbing Robot


To use existing kits and additional materials to provide an opportunity for children and novices to build innovative and playful toys. In the process children are exposed to a wide variety of applications.

A Garbage Collecting Robot


The BRiCS team typically conducts workshops at schools and colleges. All workshops are conducted by a team of IIT students headed by an experienced BRiCS team member. Each groups of 3-4 participants is assigned a mentor who guides their ideas and works with the group in solving problems.

In each case, there is an exhibition at the end of the workshop which is open to other students and the public. We especially encourage attendance by the families of the students. This workshop highlights the models built by the students, which often involve commercial kits with other items (for artwork etc) integrated into them.

  1. Three-day Workshop
    These are the most desirable. In this case we can take the participants into a suitable theme, which they design ideas for on the first day, and build and program and decorate over the next two days. We are also able to introduce advanced programming based system building, and some of the concepts of real robots.
  2. Two-day Workshop
    These are the most common, over the weekend - Sat-Sun are typical dates. Here we cover all three of the phases in the structure above, and the students are usually able to build fairly impressive models on the exhibition day.
  3. One-day Workshop
    It is also possible to build some toys in a one-day workshop, but this is not encouraged since there is not enough time to develop on the ideas related to the theme of the workshop.
  4. Half-day Workshop
    These are conducted only for special groups or as part of other festivals or demos. They only serve to whet the participants curiosity, though here too, the participants are given the task of building a model, with varying degrees of success.

Y-Roller Robot

Project Investigator

Prof Amitabha Mukherjee

Page updated on Fri Mar 7 15:19:37 IST 2003