IIT Madras to get Rs 242cr for lab-grown diamonds' R&D

The Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IIT-M) will receive Rs 242 crore as a research grant for research and development of lab-grown diamonds (LGDs), the institute said on Thursday.

The research will be focused on driving the indigenization of the LGD manufacturing process.

Presenting the Budget 2023-24 in the Parliament on Wednesday, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, said: "The LGD is a technology and innovation-driven emerging sector with high employment potential."

"These environment-friendly diamonds have optically and chemically the same properties as natural diamonds. To encourage indigenous production of LGD seeds and machines and to reduce import dependency, a research and development grant will be provided to one of the IITs for five years," the Finance Minister added.

As per a recommendation made by the Department of Commerce, the research grant of Rs 242 crore over a period of five years to IIT-M has been approved, the statement said.

"This is indeed the right time to set up a diamond factory in India, given that diamonds have thermal and electrical properties making them superior to contemporary technologies like silicon, silicon carbide and gallium nitride. IIT-Madras will work towards producing diamond wafers suitable for electronic applications," Prof. V. Kamakoti, Director of IIT-M, said.