Dr R N Yadava of the Regional Research Laboratory of Bhopal, part of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) of India, visited the Lodge recently and gave a seminar on the work carried out at his Laboratory.

Dr Yadava obtained his PhD at the Indian Institute of Technology of Bombay. He was awarded the prestigious Raman Research Fellowship in Water Resources Management and has published many scientific papers in different Journals and Conferences.

His Laboratory is interested in research into Material, Processing, Metallurgy, Chemical Processes and Environmental and Water Resources Management. The Centre is also involved in the development of alternative building materials using industrial waste and natural resources.

Dr Yadava referred in particular to the activities developed at his Centre in the field of water resources development and management. One of the problems they have been studying recently is the depletion of the water table and how to find a practical solution for the management of groundwater resources. This led to a programme for irrigation management of small farms and another on groundwater contamination. The results have been very encouraging and the water table has now risen considerably in the region under study as a result of the implementation of the programme for water resources management, which includes irrigation usage.

The groundwater contamination problem relates to problems with fluoride and arsenic, particularly the former which is a major health problem in the region. They have developed a type of de-fluorisation unit to remedy this major health risk hazard.

Another important activity of the Laboratory is related to the United Nations Development Programme for the establishment of local technology and their applications. This programme aims to generate employment and in this way reduce migration from the rural areas to the cities.

The talk generated a lively discussion with the participation of researchers and members of staff interested in modelling the transport of contaminants in aquifers. It is hoped that the visit will lead to future collaboration between the Bhopal Laboratory and the Wessex Institute.