Introduction to Ancient Indian Technology

By Prof. D.P. Mishra   |   IIT Kanpur
Learners enrolled: 1235
This course is designed for undergraduate students, interested in learning about the ancient Indian Technology which is the hallmark of  glorious Indian civilization, only living civilization of the world that exists till today. The main emphasis is placed on nature centric  aspects of ancient Indian technologies that can be adopted in modern time. As this is an introductory course, care has been taken to present the materials in a gradual manner to instill confidence in the minds of the students.  Attempts have been made to keep the deliberation as simple as possible with intriguing questions so that students can take exploratory route to learn more about it in future. Adequate emphasis is given in this course for exposing the students to ancient science and technologies which can be adopted for modern technological development. The tenets of various technologies which are essential for human living are discussed in details to encourage the students to develop a feel for ancient Indian and technologies. 

Course Status : Completed
Course Type : Elective
Duration : 8 weeks
Category :
  • Aerospace Engineering
Credit Points : 2
Level : Undergraduate
Start Date : 14 Sep 2020
End Date : 06 Nov 2020
Enrollment Ends : 25 Sep 2020
Exam Date : 18 Dec 2020 IST

Note: This exam date is subjected to change based on seat availability. You can check final exam date on your hall ticket.

Page Visits

Course layout

Week 1. Introduction: Why are ancient Indian science and technology relevant today? What is science? How is it different from technology? 
              Philosophy of ancient Indian technology, how is different from modern technology? Ancient Indian Scientific methods. Glimpses of ancient 
              Indian science and technology?
Week 2. Philosophy of ancient Indian technology, how is different from modern technology? Ancient Indian Scientific methods.
Week 3. Glimpses of ancient Indian science and technology?
Week 4. Material Technology : Mining, Metals and Metallurgy, Iron Making and craftsmanship, Wootz Steel Technology
Week 5. Extraction of Zinc in ancient India, Glass making, Bead making Techniques, Ceramic Technology
Week 6. Water Harvesting Technology, Irrigation Systems
Week 7. Town planning, Building construction, Sanitation
Week 8. Agriculture and Textile Technology

Books and references


Instructor bio

Prof. D.P. Mishra

IIT Kanpur
Dr. D.P. Mishra is a professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur, India where he was instrumental in establishing a combustion laboratory. He currently holds the Indian Oil Golden Jubilee Professional Chair in IIT Kanpur. He was a Visiting Professor in 2002 at the Tokyo-Denki University, Japan. His areas of research interest include combustion, computational fluid dynamics, atomization, etc. He is the recipient of the Young Scientist Award in 1991 from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Government of India. He was conferred the INSA-JSPS Fellowship in 2002. In recognition of his research, Dr. Mishra received Sir Rajendranath Mookerjee Memorial Awardfrom the Institution of Engineers (India). Dr. Mishra is a recipient of the Samanta Chadrasekhar Award for his contributions to science and technology. For technological contribution for the common people, he has been conferred with the Vikash Prerak Sanman in 2010. Currently he is serving as an Assistant Editor, International Journal of Hydrogen Energy, Elsevier, USA. Besides this, he also serves as an editorial board member of Journal of the Chinese Institute of Engineers, Taylor & Francis, and International Journal of Turbo and Jet engines. Dr. Mishra has six Indian patents and around 200 research papers in refereed Journals and in conference proceedings to his credit. He has authored a textbook titled “Fundamentals of Combustion”, published by Prentice Hall of India, New Delhi. Two other text books on “Experimental Combustion” and “Engineering Thermodynamics” have been published by Taylor and Francis, USA and Cengage India Pvt Ltd., New Delhi, respectively. He has published a text book titled as “Gas turbine propulsion” (MV Learning, New Delhi/London). He is also serving as a managing trustee of the International Foundation of Humanistic Education. He is also actively involved in social works in the field of education, natural farming, etc. He is instrumental in making all India level group, Awake Mother India which is trying to rejuvenate our Mother land. He is working to revitalize the ancient Indian science and technology. He has published two books, “Glimpses of Ancient Indian Science and Technology” and “Forays into Ancient Indian Science and Technology”.

Course certificate

The course is free to enroll and learn from. But if you want a certificate, you have to register and write the proctored exam conducted by us in person at any of the designated exam centres.
The exam is optional for a fee of Rs 1000/- (Rupees one thousand only).
Date and Time of Exams: 18 December , 2020 Morning session 9am to 12 noon; Afternoon Session 2pm to 5pm.
Registration url: Announcements will be made when the registration form is open for registrations.
The online registration form has to be filled and the certification exam fee needs to be paid. More details will be made available when the exam registration form is published. If there are any changes, it will be mentioned then.
Please check the form for more details on the cities where the exams will be held, the conditions you agree to when you fill the form etc.


Average assignment score = 25% of average of best 6 assignments out of the total 8 assignments given in the course. 
Exam score = 75% of the proctored certification exam score out of 100

Final score = Average assignment score + Exam score

YOU WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CERTIFICATE ONLY IF AVERAGE ASSIGNMENT SCORE >=10/25 AND EXAM SCORE >= 30/75. If one of the 2 criteria is not met, you will not get the certificate even if the Final score >= 40/100.

Certificate will have your name, photograph and the score in the final exam with the breakup.It will have the logos of NPTEL and IIT Kanpur .It will be e-verifiable at nptel.ac.in/noc.

Only the e-certificate will be made available. Hard copies will not be dispatched.

Once again, thanks for your interest in our online courses and certification. Happy learning. 

- NPTEL team

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