India’s Scientists Create Artificial Leaf that Produces Energy

Scientists at state-owned National Chemical Laboratory in Pune, a city 90 miles east of Mumbai, India, have developed an artificial leaf that generates hydrogen.

The device consists of semiconductors stacked in a manner to simulate the natural leaf system. When light strikes the semiconductors, electrons move in one direction, and the ultra-thin wireless device mimics plant leaves to produce energy using water and sunlight.

a leaf

Chinnakonda S. Gopinath, a senior scientist at the laboratory said his team has been working for nearly a decade to split water molecules in order to generate hydrogen in this manner. “We have made an attempt to generate solar hydrogen. The method is simple and practical and there is a good possibility of scaling it up,” he said. The research, published in the journal Scientific Reports, says a palm-sized device can produce 6.3 quarts of hydrogen fuel an hour, reports NDTV. More work is needed on the project, added the scientist.


September 14, 2017   No Comments

Jeep Compass Sales in India Exceed Expectations

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is close to making more revenue in India than it invested in a factory at Pune, 90 miles from Mumbai, due to strong customer response to the Jeep Compass SUV it launched in late July.
“It is expanding into the world’s largest markets such as India that is fueling our growth and accelerating our expansion,” said Paul Alcala, who heads the company’s operations in Asia.
Jeep Compass

Jeep Compass

The Economic Times reports that the Italian-American automaker has so far secured orders for 8,171 units of Jeep Compass 2017 worth $245 million in India; the company has invested $280 million in the factory.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is ramping up production and is working toward a 25% more output than initially planned. The company says it will operate two shifts for six days a week for the first time since the plant was set up a decade ago. Production of export-designated vehicles has not started yet.

August 28, 2017   No Comments

Mars Food Acquires Tasty Bite in India

Mars Food, the European arm of Virginia-based Mars Inc, has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Preferred Brands International, based in Connecticut. The deal is expected to close by the fourth quarter of 2017, subject to regulatory approvals.

Preferred Brands International, a manufacturer and marketer of ready-to-heat Indian and Asian food products, in turn, owns a majority stake in subsidiary Tasty Bite Eatables which manufactures the ready-to-eat products under the brand name Tasty Bite in Pune, India. The Economic Times reports that the subsidiary will continue to be listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange after the acquisition.

Tasty Bite Products

Mars Food Global President Fiona Dawson said, “Tasty Bite is a fast-growing Indian/Asian dinner time brand. Upon closing of the acquisition, Mars Food will expand our all-natural vegetarian offerings in the U.S. and leverage Tasty Bite’s strong product development pipeline, flavor expertise and strategic sourcing of quality ingredients throughout our portfolio.”


August 16, 2017   No Comments

GE Plants Deep Local Roots in India

In a remote eastern corner of the northern state of Bihar in India, 600 miles south-east of Delhi, GE’s factory in Marhaura will house its locomotive project – GE’s centerpiece of its $200 million investment. Government of India’s $2.5 billion order for 1,000 locomotives over 11 years is one of the largest deals ever for GE’s transportation unit, and its biggest order ever in India. The factory is a joint venture with state-owned Indian Railways that invested $15 million. The plant will employ about 400 workers and is slated to begin assembling locomotives late next year.

To provide housing for workers that GE will recruit from other parts of the country, the company is building 100 residential units near the factory site. The company will also work with local officials to try to streamline bureaucracy to widen and straighten roads to ensure it can get materials to the site.  “There is a strong trend toward economic nationalism all over the world,” CEO, Jeff Immelt, said in February in a letter to shareholders. He added that the company could not depend on new trade deals to ease global commerce, but must scatter production all over the world.


John Flannery, who once ran GE’s India business, and who will take on the role of CEO in August when Immelt retires, says, “What works in Milwaukee doesn’t necessarily work in Mumbai.”

The Wall Street Journal says: A localization strategy requires a deft political touch. GE maintains that overseas investments aren’t coming at the expense of U.S. workers. The engines for all 1,000 locomotives to be assembled in Marhaura, will be built at GE’s Grove City, Pa., plant.

GE’s factory complex in the industrial city of Pune, in the state of Maharashtra, has trained a cadre of skilled workers in an automated facility, and this facility is expected to produce about 30% of the components in the locomotives to be assembled in Marhaura.


July 4, 2017   No Comments

GM Commences Export of Sedans from India

General Motors shipped a consignment of 1,200 Chevrolet Beat sedans to markets in Latin America from its plant located in Talegaon, near the city of Pune, in India. Production of these autos started a year ago. Earlier this year, GM had exported Chevrolet Beat hatchbacks to the same markets.

GM India vice-president, manufacturing, Asif Khatri said that the Talegaon facility is a key export manufacturing hub for the company reports the Times of India.

“GM India’s exports have more than tripled in the past year. GM was India’s third-largest passenger vehicle exporter in May, recording our highest monthly total of vehicle exports at 8,297 units,” Khatri added.

Chevrolet logo

June 27, 2017   No Comments