The field of robotics is being taught in more than 60 engineering universities across Pakistan at the graduate and post-graduate levels. The research and development (R&D) institutes established at these universities are also undertaking innovative experimentations in robotics. According to the Ministry of Science and Technology, a technical group has been engaged to develop automation of industrial processes at the National Institute of Electronics (NIE) in Islamabad and Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs), which are applied in automatic industrial controls.
The research group at the Centre for Intelligent Machines and Robotics (IMR) at the COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT) is working on research projects in robotics, computer vision and machine learning. These research projects are related to industrial and societal tasks with basic and applied research undertaken in robotics technologies. It is hoped that with the application of these robotics technology in Pakistan, both productivity and competitiveness can be taken to a better level.
The reseachers from CIIT are exploring their knowledge’s application for creating visual guided robotics system for use in surgery, navigation control, mapping and geometric representation of environmental parameters. NUST is working on R&D projects on Tele-Surgical Training Robot and Simulators and Development of Intelligent Robotic Wheelchairs with funds from ICT.
Since 2005, an annual competition in robotics, the National Engineering Robotics Contest (NERC) is being held between various universities which is organised by Higher Education Commission (HEC), STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Careers Project. This kind of an annual competition at the national gives students a chance to train in engineering services in Pakistan and cash prizes for the winners provide for a great incentive to motivate them.
Alongside this, to increase interest from students in the field of robotics, many international workshops and seminars have also been organised at NUST. Besides this, for those students who are interested, PhD scholarships for foreign universities are also offered. With a degree in robotics, students can also specialise in such fields as modern warfare, surgery, nano-technology and space-exploration.