Tuesday, July 01, 2014

UPSC-IES, GATE Preparation

I am writing this blog for all those serious aspirants of ESE & GATE who come ot internet after long hours of study to relax and get motivated by reading topper's stories. I used to do that when I was preparing for my exams.

I got lot of inspiration from a blog by Mr Tirumala K V who cracked Engineering Services Rank 36 in 2006. He wrote about his interview experiences and I used to read it even while preparing for my written exams. Sounds weird but I used to do that. Remember craziness is part and parcel of any serious preparation and  also remember there is always an exam tougher than which you cracked recently.

Frankly speaking these exams are nothing, they just check your abilities to perform !! Medium is questions ..

Friends, if you have decided to go for it then just go for it never look back until you finish it. Conditions under which I wrote exam UPSC-ESE were very tough coz when I decided I had only attempt left (first n last) coz of my age restrictions. I had family, job and gang of my best friends to hang out with....but then how I tackled them- I think that was my preparation rather then how to solve a balancing problem or linear programming problem.

Life teaches you everyday its only you who has to keep your mind and eyes open to learn from it and go for the kill.

Read well, be motivated and crack exams. I am here to motivate you. More I will write about my preps , my problems in the blogs to come...do visit again...

Saturday, July 27, 2013

UPSC-Indian Engineering Service 2012


All India Rank : 14
Discipline: Mechanical Engg
Services Opted for: IRSME, CEMES
Current Position: Dy. Manager (BHEL)

Past selections: GATE(99.74), BHEL, DRDO, L&T, IIMA (FPM-Shortlisted)
Achievements: Dayalbagh University Topper

That time still quite fresh in my mind, young  recently graduated boy headed towards IIT-Bombay for his MTech giving up many lucrative options of TCS, L&T, DRDO, ISRO etc. I started enjoying my stay at Powai and started cracking quizzes, exams there.

One day I got a call from my Dad informing me about my selection in BHEL and insisted me of joining it. I brooded a lot then decided to get settled.

BHEL was good when I joined, I topped in the training program and was allotted Hydro Deptt as my first posting in Bhopal. I started enjoying my work in Hydro Station Engineering, got to know many facets of Hydro Projects, worked in Mech BOPs, Hydro Station Layout, Drainage & dewatering Systems. Having worked for 7 odd years, my GM thought of moving me to fill the vacancy in Production Deptt.

Somewhere in this transition period (2011-2012) my wife sensed my indifference towards my job. She very easily felt my incipient frustration and urged me to try ESE reminding me of my past achievements viz DEI Topper, success in GATE (99.74%ile).  I rebutted her stating that its too late of writing an exam that too tough exam like UPSC IES where lacs of candidates compete for paltry 50 odd seats in my branch. She urged me to forget about everything & and asked me to just give a try.

I accepted her request and decided to take plunge into the text books once again after 7 years of my graduation. It was really tough to sit for more than hour initially. I couldnot focus as I always longed to be with my family (wife & daughter-1.5 yr old then) after work. But gradually I started gaining interest and was bonded to my seat. June, July ,August 2011 just passed without much input and course coverage but later I pulled the gears to finish off Paper-I by November11'. Started Paper-II in December to finish it off by March 12'.

Started my GS and final revision of my Mech during April, May and finally D-Day came on 15th June 2012. I cracked all papers & got cracked in just one Mech conv-I. I fumbled a lot there, wasted my precious time and later couldnot do much. Except P-I conv I was satisfied with my performance in ESE 2012.

Later written results were out and I was declared selected and got shorlisted for interview. Interview(April 2013) went extremely smooth and came out satisfied (got 120/200 in PI).

Final results came on 20.06.2013 and was thrilled & overjoyed to see my name at Rank 14 in the merit list. I thanked almighty & my wife for all support that they gave me all through the process.

Joining the services is a decision that is yet to be taken but I got what my wife wanted- I smiled with full confidence and regained all my lost glory and verve.

We can get anything and everything in life. What is required: full dedication, commitment and strong faith in your abilities. Look at the topper and say if he can, I can also do it !

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Campus placement -Mad Rush

In some of my previous blogs, I had mentioned about not getting selected in Tata motors. I can recall that moment I realized this I lost my sense for a while.  I couldnot stop being extremely sad. My friends-Jayant(J)& Ajay(A)  supported me (I) & Madan(M). Out of V4, only A & J were through and I & M were still jobless !

We were group of 4 incidently top 4 of the Institute ! I can recall J literally asking me to forget eveything ,even the fact that A & him are got selected. A added that you & M are surely going to get selected in the next company -that was TCS !

I can recollect dialogue from movie 3 Idiots on human psychology which is apt here - " jab dost first aata hain toa jyada dukh hota hain".

"Job-Full" guys promised not to have any celebrations unless rest 2 get through. I & M started preparing. TCS was all about Vocab and simple Maths. We were comfortable with that. Actually we were not comfortable with the computer programning languages, C , Data Structures etc. Precisely we were afraid of interviews involving all these stuff rather than Mechanical Engineering. J came in handy and helped both of us in making us comfortable with the computers and the world of softwares.

D day came and we 4 were together as if we all have to appear for the TCS test. I & M alongwith other jobless "would be" engineers entered the computer centre for TCS written test and J & A waited outside equally anxious ! An hour later we came out happy as we had cracked it ! What next-by afternoon list of students who cleared the written part was pasted on the notice board. We rushed in to check and A confirmed that  I & M are through.

We got geared up for interview and to the best of my memory both interviews were cleared by 9PM ! We were walking in the corridors-restless, waiting for the final list. At around 10PM , it was chilly December 2003 night,  results came out and bingo we made it ! Jubiliant and extremely happy..We all said in unision -Yes we have done it !

It was the most happiest moment on the campus. It was a great feeling to get a job in the 7th semester itself of the Engineering. I was very happy. M & I hugged each other-we were TCS pair then J&A hugged as TML pair and then we all four hugged together for the success and then it was party time !!!

Later on my success bag opened up and I literally got selected in all  exams & jobs I laid my hands on. I got through GATE (Rank 64), DRDO, L&T (Top 15), ISRO & IIMA (shorlisted for FPM). Then I realized, its  its really tough to face a single failure !

Today none of us are in the same company/job which campus placements gifted us. J & A joined TML later to quit it to become Consultant@ Accenture-Australia & Quality Chief @ Honda respectively. Madan shifted to Canada as Sr App Developer @ Bank of Montreal and I didnt even join TCS and headed towards IIT-Bombay for my MTech-thanks to my GATE score. But  later I quit my MTech and joined BHEL as Engineer.

As young engineering students we dont forsee future events, we just live in present. We take success and failures too seriously. Having good friends is a bliss and I have realized that bliss ! As Engineering students, we should not take campus placements as end of world of opportunity. Always believe in yourself and your skills.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Beauty of Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Engineering is a beautiful branch of engineering. It’s been here since ages. It includes study & application of principles of mechanics, energy & fluid mechanics to create mechanical systems aimed at doing innumerable tasks.

As a course of study, it begins with learning fundamentals of statics & dynamics which forms the base. Along with it comes Thermodynamics which is again a fundamental subject which deals with study of heat, work and energy in the form of First, Second and Third laws. It also includes study of Availability & Irreversibility, Entropy, Real Gases, Thermodynamic cycles, Properties of Pure Substances like steam. All Thermal Power Plants work on principles of Rankine power cycle. This forms the basis of all Thermal Energy Systems. Fluid Mechanics is another subject which is taught with an objective to understand properties of various engineering fluids along with application of principles of statics & dynamics. In the first phase we learn Fluid Mechanics assuming fluids to be incompressible-Bernoulli, Potential flow, Flow net, Stream Function, Euler & Lagrangian approaches. Similitude and Dimensional Analysis (Buckingham Pi Theorem, Rayleigh Theorem) arms us with testing of equipments by making their scaled models. Dimensionless numbers like Reynolds, Weber, Froude No. come in handy in comparing performances of models and prototypes. After this, we start getting practical and feel that assuming fluids to incompressible is a deviation from real life engineering problems. Mechanical Engineering teaches us Gas Dynamics wherein we assume fluid to be compressible and concepts of Mach No, Rankine Flow, Fanno flow which are perfect amalgamation of fundamentals of Thermodynamics & Fluid Mechanics are unfolded.

While learning we start thinking that what about systems which interact with surrounding which are at different temperatures. At this point of time, we are introduced with another gem of Thermal Stream-Heat & Mass Transfer. In this we are introduced to all modes of Heat Transfer-Conduction, Convection & Radiation. In this area of study, we understand how all subjects are so intertwined and interconnected. During study of convection, we start appreciating the fact that its application of Fluid Mechanics to Thermal systems. Flow of fluids on hot surface like flat plates, concepts of boundary layer, Nusselt Number and calculations of Heat transfer coefficient takes the Centre stage. Study of Thermal stream of Mechanical Engineering is incomplete without study of Internal Combustion Engines, Refrigeration & air-conditioning & Fluid Machines. Study of IC Engines entails complete understanding of HT, Dynamics of Mechanical Systems. It basically includes study of various types of engines, combustion, fuels, emission analysis. RAC is a direct application of Thermodynamics-its study takes Reverse Carnot cycle as ideal system impossible to be reached. Various types of refrigeration systems –air, VC, VA are studied. It also includes study of moist air (Psychrormetry) which is the core theme of air conditioning system. Fluid Machinery includes Hydraulic Pumps & turbines-power producing and power absorbing machines.

Design and Manufacturing part of Mechanical Engineering is another world in itself. It begins with study of Theory of Machines wherein study, design & analysis of various mechanisms, linkages is done. Concepts of Grashof mechanism, inversions of various mechanisms which form the basis of various machinery that we see around us including steering mechanism of automobiles. Study of Gears, Cams, Belt, Chain & Rope drives is another area with which all Mechanical Engineers should be well versed. Mechanics of Materials (Strength of Materials, Mechanics of Solids) is taught wherein concepts of mechanics are applied to engineering materials with a view that all materials have different strength. This forms the basis of ME Design. With all this, budding mechanical engineers take a plunge into Mechanical Engineering Design wherein they learn principles of design-economy, value and strength. Without understanding the fundamentals of Engineering materials –design cannot be taught or understood. Properties of metals, alloys, composites, and ceramics are to be necessarily understood by all Mechanical Engineers which comes in handy while selecting the materials for various applications. Heat Treatment of Steels, Cast Irons, Fe-C diagrams should be thoroughly understood.

After Design, comes manufacturing. In manufacturing engineering, mechanical engineers are taught principles of metal forming, welding, metallurgy, casting, metrology, jigs & fixtures, advanced manufacturing processes like Abrasive jet machining, water jet machining, electro discharge machining. Modern Manufacturing concepts like CAD/CAM/CAE, FMS, Lean Manufacturing principles are taught as best practices of manufacturing systems.

With Thermal, Design & Manufacturing comes another stream- Industrial Engineering. It includes work study, time study, Forecasting, Quality principles, Principles of Operations Research which are optimization techniques.

With this much study-a mechanical engineer is a complete man armed with Engineering Principles mixed with management fundamentals. With so much to learn where every subject is a organized field in the Industry, Mechanical Engineering is a true Engineering in the real sense !