You are currently viewing Internship Experience at DRDO :Priyanshu Mishra
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Internship Experience at DRDO :Priyanshu Mishra

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InternFeel ID: IF15025

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Q1) In which course are you presently enrolled? Please tell us something about yourself- your interests and areas of specialization.

My name is Priyanshu Mishra. I am presently in my 4th year, pursuing B.Tech in mechanical engineering from SRM University, Chennai. My area of interest is Automotive engineering especially in heavy haulage multi axle trailers, commercial trucks, buses and special application vehicles.

Q2) Which internship did you opt for? Briefly describe the application process and eligibility with a few details like stipend, duration and location.

I went for a research internship at the Vehicle Research & Development Establishment (VRDE) lab of DRDO in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra for 7 weeks. No stipend was paid. I was given a project along with 4 other interns on ‘Study and analysis on Articulated vehicles for special application’. I’d advise that you apply early as they receive many applications and only a handful of students are selected.

The documents required are:-

  • Letter of recommendation(LoR) from college HOD or Dean
  • Statement of purpose
  • Bonafide certificate from college
  • ID Proof and address proof

All the documents duly attested along with a cover letter have to be posted to Director of VRDE. Once the application is accepted, VRDE will send a confirmation letter to the college containing a number of undertakings and bonds which need to be attested from college

There is no hostel facility at VRDE and as the lab is far away from the city, we could not find suitable accommodation. One of the scientists provided us with a vacant bungalow, where I stayed with two of my classmates selected for the same programme.

Q3)Is this your first Internship? How did you come to know about the internship? Which channels of information (Internet/ Personal/Corporate contacts etc.) did you utilize?

No, I have prior internship experience with the Delhi Metro (DMRC). I came to know about this internship through one of my seniors from IIT-B, who had applied earlier and secured the internship.


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Q4) Let’s talk about how competitive the selection process is. What qualities of yours do you think helped you to have an edge in the selection process?

Securing an internship in a DRDO lab is usually tough as they rarely entertain interns due to security issues. My past internship experiences and projects helped me to secure this internship. Also the selectors look for students who are research oriented in a specific field and my great passion for automotives certainly gave me an edge. Higher CGPA and prior internship experience in IITs, NITs or other research institutes are factors that increase the chances of getting selected. A LoR from a Professor is a plus.

Q5)According to you, what are some common mistakes that you feel applicants should avoid in the internship application process?

I think students should confirm the internship dates before applying so as to plan other activities accordingly. Also they must take into consideration what genre of industry they are applying to and whether or not the industry is related to their field of interest. They should choose internships that are analogous to their area of expertise and not just for the sake of doing any random internship.

Q6)What kind of groundwork did you do post-selection and before beginning the internship?

Prior to my internship, I searched through various portals like Internshala, Eduinfo, WeMakeScholars and the like. I studied various articulated vehicles and latest trends in commercial vehicles, defense off roaders and tractor trailers of various class.


Q7)Please give us a brief overview of your work. What was the best feature of the work ethic of the organization and the internship? What were your gains and takeaways?

My project was on the ‘Study and Analysis on Articulated vehicle for special application’ which included the latest product of VRDE, Transport-cum-Tilting vehicle (TCT-5) which is a missile launch vehicle for Inter-continental Ballistic missile (ICBM), Agni-5 weighing 65 tons. TCT-5 has a unique configuration of 140 ton GVW hydraulic live gooseneck steerable trailer launching mechanism with overall dimension of 30 m (length) x 3.2 m (width) x 4.4 m (height). It has an electronic controller for all auto and remote operations, a 23 kVA genset, a PTO driven hydraulic power pack and can therefore carry out launch operation without any external power source and logistics. The trailer is hauled by FH Series of Volvo Tractor imported from Sweden.

We had done hydraulic suspension calibration on ADAMS software for multi body analysis of the trailer with variable vibration caused due to tilting of missile canister. The vehicle has a unique innovative mechanism of live gooseneck assembly, which is one of a kind globally because of which the team of TCT 5 has filed for patent too. I had done the project under Shri Sanjay Chaudhuri Sc ‘F’ Associate Director, (Special Vehicle Division) at VRDE. He is an IITM alumni with a long history of Research service under DRDO panel and has given many products some of which are ‘Agni-3’ & ‘Agni-5’ launch vehicles. This project has taken India one step forward to launch ICBMs from suitable launch area thus portraying stronger defense strength.

VRDE has a really supportive staff. They give access to most of the labs and all the journals. The library of VRDE in MIG block is one of a kind having all possible material related to automotives. Also the National Centre for Automotive testing (NCAT) which is one of its kind in the whole of Asia is like icing on the cake for an automotive enthusiast. All the vehicles in India, whether in testing stage or imported have to get their certification done there to drive on Indian Roads. It gave us chance to see many latest test vehicles of top notch automotive companies like Benz, BMW, Volvo, Scania, Audi etc. We were lucky enough to see the high speed testing of Jaguar and Lamborghini which really gave me goosebumps.

This internship experience at DRDO provided the scope to work on and study special military vehicles which are hardly seen elsewhere on a day to day basis thus exposing the strength of Indian Defense forces. This internship has given me a perspective about the research prospects unexplored in the field of commercial vehicles. It is a profitable sector which directly effects global economy. Also I learnt to work in a particular field of specialization rather being jack of all trades and master of none.

Q8) Let’s now talk about some negatives. What were the glitches and problems that came your way, which you think your juniors should be careful to avoid?

The main problem I faced was access to the Lab premises. They made me wait a whole day just to make a biometric ID card although I had the internship confirmation letter with me.

They maintain a strict security regime to such an extent that there are no USB slots in most of the systems to prevent any security breach in the lab. It is so severe there that an Intern lost his internship just because he had clicked pics of some top secret vehicles inside the premises.

Q9) Were there any special events during the internships? (Events can be academics related like field trips, conferences, hackathons, meets etc. and also non-academic, relating to your hostel life and the like)

There was a conference held by scientists of RDE & VRDE on latest tracked vehicle technology and we were privileged to attend it. I travelled to Mumbai, Pune, Shirdi, Ellora caves, Lonavala along with my friends and it was an amazing experience. Our Mumbai trip turned out to be a let down due to heavy rain.


Q10) What are your future plans and how much of an impact do you think this internship will have on it?

An internship experience at DRDO is a very prestigious opportunity. I am planning for MS in automotive engineering and this internship will play great role in enhancing my profile.

Q11) Any advice for juniors that can help them in getting internships in future and for deriving the best learning experience out of it?

Apply early and try to make good contacts during your internships because these contacts can sometimes land you up in getting jobs through reference of your guide. If anyone is applying for DRDO, provide all the details correctly and get all the undertaking forms filled in time else they will make you wait until security clearance is given.

Q12) Any views about this initiative of InternFeel, and how beneficial it would be? Any suggestions/feedback for improvement?

Internfeel is providing an excellent platform for interns to share their real time experiences which help other students to know about various prospects that remain unknown due to lack of exposure or other reasons.

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