22 December 2021

SPRAC: Special Program for Research against COVID-19

AUN Writer Team

By JICA Project for AUN/SEED-Net

SPRAC Sparks A Light for Research Future

As COVID-19 swept across the globe in the past few years, JICA Project for AUN/SEED-Net strongly believes that scientific research is the key not only to the alleviation of the current impact, but also to the more effective and accessible diagnosis and treatment process in the future. In response to this current dreadful pandemic threat, the “Special Program for Research against COVID-19 (SPRAC)” was created. The program offered a maximum of $50,000 grant for researchers from Member Institutions to conduct an engineering-based research on any COVID-19-related topics, including:

  • Data analysis towards sustainable tourism business
  • Air disinfection device
  • Ventilator for COVID patient
  • Face mask
  • Medical service robot
  • COVID-19 detection

All collaborative research proposals featured interdisciplinary ideas, methods, tools, and technologies that exhibited potential contribution to counter the coronavirus outbreak, including prevention and preparation for future crises.

Led by Prof. Riyanarto Sarno, Institut Teknologi Sepuluh Nopember (ITS), the idea of INOSEC19 initially emerged when Prof. Sarno was watching the news on the detection of Covid-19 at Dubai Airport by using dogs to smell human sweat. With his previous experience in building an electronic nose device, Prof. Sarno and his team got inspired and created an electronic nose to detect Coronavirus Disease (COVID19) through the smell of axillary sweat odor, subsequently named “INOSEC19”.

ITS introduced INOSEC19 to the Deputy Governor of East Java, the Ministry of Research and Technology/National Research and Innovation Agency, and the Indonesian Minister of Health. Having been recognized by several government agencies, not only INOSEC19 was announced as a National Research Priority Program by the Ministry of Research and Technology/National Research and Innovation Agency; it has also been attracting many hospitals in Surabaya including Ahmad Yani Islamic Hospital, Dr. Ramelan Navy Hospital, Dr. Soetomo General Academic Teaching Hospital, Indrapura Field Hospital, and Jemursari Islamic Hospital to collaborate with the project.

For more details of other SPRAC projects, please visit: