On February 7, 2019, Polman Astra Product Development and Technology Application Institute invited Polman Astra Lecturers and Instructors to discuss on how they could develop research with strong support, not only from Polman Astra civitas academics but also from the Government by utilizing the Government Research funds prepared by the Indonesian government, the Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education. The event, which also attended by the Secretary of the Astra Bina Ilmu Foundation (YABI), Yakub Liman and the Directorate of Polman Astra, wanted to raise the interest of Polman Astra lecturers to do more specific innovations research that support the industrial world manufacture.
The increasing of the competitiveness in the industrial sector, especially the manufacturing industry is very important because the sector provides contribution to economic growth in Indonesia. Seeing the importance of it, Higher Education Research launched the Research Incentive Program of Industrial Technology Development Program, which was first issued in 2015. The target are specifically for stimulating people who works in Industrial Research & Development (RND) to do a synergy with universities in developing national industrial technology products that aren’t limited to output but also become industrial-worthy prototypes that could enter the pre-commercial phase (have been tested) and ready for mass production (commercial). The government has budgeted to finance the RND activities between Industry and Higher Education to achieve this goal.
Polman Astra through LP3T has been actively submitting the proposal since 2015. With strong support from the Astra Group industry, the Polman Astra LP3T team isn’t give up to submit the proposals to get assistance from the Government. It’s hard, indeed, but after learning from the experience of submitting the earlier proposal, in 2018 the proposals submitted by Polman Astra was approved, with the theme of Multi-Function CNC Machines (CO2 Laser, Engraving, and 3D Printing) as a Support of Information Technology and Communication.
The team that consisting of Dr. Eng. Syahril Ardi,Fadli Hari Purnomo, Harki Apri Yanto Ph.D, Heru Suprapto, MT., Febri Setianto, Philipus Mahadi, Afriana Aghata and Vincensius Herdani Agung, shared their experiences on preparing the proposals until they completed the project and according to them, the most important thing is how they can prove to Research, Technology and Higher Education that they will take full account for the project. The project, which is supported by PT Winteq, a subsidiary of PT Astra Otoparts, is expected to answer the needs of manufacturing SME that doesn’t have enough space to produce and also the need for mutifunction machines. As stated in his speech, Yakub Liman hoped that Polman Astra would focus more on sustainable product innovation and not just focus on commercialization, because the process would take more time and the project are more appropriate to be done by the industry since the industry are understand what market needs.
Tony Harley as Director of Polman Astra expressed how proud he is with the achievements of this team and he also encouraging all lecturers to submit their innovation proposals by sharing the team’s experience on getting Industrial Technology Development Program Research Funds from the government. With the support of the Astra industry, the lecturers and instructors of Polman Astra shouldn’t hesitate to do research, because this innovative product will be a pride not only for PT Astra International but also for the nation, as it parallel with Astra’s dreams to be the nation pride in 2020.