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GATE 2021 Production & Industrial Engineering (PI) Syllabus, Preparation Tips and Books

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Nikkil Visha

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Production and Industrial Engineering is an interdisciplinary engineering discipline that includes manufacturing technology, engineering sciences, management science, and optimization of complex processes, etc. GATE 2021 Production and Industrial Engineering syllabus has been revised with the addition of some new topics. 

  • In GATE 2021 PI paper, 72% of the questions are asked from core subject, 13% from engineering mathematics, and the remaining 15% questions from the general aptitude section. 
  • GATE Production and Industrial Engineering question paper will have 65 questions worth 100 marksCheck  GATE 2021 PI Exam Pattern
  • PI as your first paper you can only opt for XE as your second paper. 

Candidates will get 3 hour time to complete the paper and after qualifying GATE 2021, candidates will become eligible to get admission in M.Tech courses offered at IITs, NITs, etc. Read the article to know more about Production and Industrial Engineering Syllabus, marking scheme, important sections, best books, and some preparation tips. 

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GATE Production Engineering Syllabus

GATE 2021 Production and Industrial Engineering Syllabus

GATE Production and Industrial Engineering syllabus is spread across seven sections. Candidates can check the following section to know the syllabus for production and industrial engineering which are given below:

Section 1: Engineering Mathematics

  • Linear Algebra
  • Calculus
  • Differential equations
  • Complex variables
  • Probability and Statistics
  • Numerical Methods

Section 2: General Engineering

  • Engineering Materials: Structure, physical and mechanical properties, and applications of common engineering materials (metals and alloys, semiconductors, ceramics, polymers, and composites – metal, polymer and ceramic based); Iron-carbon equilibrium phase diagram; Heat treatment of metals and alloys and its influence on mechanical properties; Stress-strain behavior of metals and alloys.
  • Applied Mechanics: Engineering mechanics – equivalent force systems, free body concepts, equations of equilibrium; Trusses; Strength of materials – stress, strain and their relationship; Failure theories; Mohr’s circle (stress); Deflection of beams, bending and shear stresses; Euler’s theory of columns; Thick and thin cylinders; Torsion.
  • Theory of Machines and Design: Analysis of planar mechanisms, cams and followers; Governors and fly wheels; Design of bolted, riveted and welded joints; Interference/shrink fit joints; Friction and lubrication; Design of shafts, keys, couplings, spur gears, belt drives, brakes and clutches; Pressure vessels.
  • Thermal and Fluids Engineering: Fluid mechanics – fluid statics, Bernoulli’s equation, flow through pipes, laminar and turbulent flows, equations of continuity and momentum, capillary action; Dimensional analysis Thermodynamics – zeroth, first and second laws of thermodynamics, thermodynamic systems and processes, calculation of work and heat for systems and control volumes; Air standard cycles; Heat transfer – basic applications of conduction, convection and radiation.

Section 3: Manufacturing Processes I

  • Casting: Types of casting processes and applications; Sand casting: patterns – types, materials and allowances; molds and cores–materials, making, and testing; design of gating system and riser; casting techniques of cast iron, steels, and nonferrous metals and alloys; analysis of solidification and microstructure development; Other casting techniques: Pressure die casting, Centrifugal casting, Investment casting, Shell mold casting; Casting defects and their inspection by non-destructive testing.
  • Metal Forming: Stress-strain relations in elastic and plastic deformation; von Mises and Tresca yield criteria, Concept of flow stress; Hot, warm and cold working; Bulk forming processes - forging, rolling, extrusion and wire drawing; Sheet metal working processes – blanking, punching, bending, stretch forming, spinning and deep drawing; Ideal work and slab analysis; Defects in metal working and their causes.
  • Joining of Materials: Classification of joining processes; Principles of fusion welding processes using different heat sources (flame, arc, resistance, laser, electron beam), Heat transfer and associated losses; Arc welding processes - SMAW, GMAW, GTAW, plasma arc, submerged arc welding processes; Principles of solid state welding processes - friction welding, friction stir welding, ultrasonic welding; Welding defects - causes and inspection; Principles of adhesive joining, brazing and soldering processes.
  • Powder Processing: Production of metal/ceramic powders, compaction and sintering of metals and ceramic powders, Cold and hot isostatic pressing.
  • Polymers and Composites: Polymer processing – injection, compression and blow molding, extrusion, calendaring and thermoforming; Molding of composites.

Section 4: Manufacturing Processes II

  • Machining: Orthogonal and oblique machining, Single point cutting tool and tool signature, Chip formation, cutting forces, Merchant’s analysis, Specific cutting energy and power; Machining parameters and material removal rate; tool materials, Tool wear and tool life; Thermal aspects of machining, cutting fluids, machinability; Economics of machining; Machining processes - turning, taper turning, thread cutting, drilling, boring, milling, gear cutting, thread production; Finishing processes – grinding, honing, lapping and super-finishing.
  • Machine Tools: Lathe, milling, drilling and shaping machines – construction and kinematics; Jigs and fixtures – principles, applications, and design.
  • Advanced Manufacturing: Principles and applications of USM, AJM, WJM, AWJM, EDM and Wire EDM, LBM, EBM, PAM, CHM, ECM; Effect of process parameters on material removal rate, surface roughness and power consumption; Additive manufacturing techniques.
  • Computer Integrated Manufacturing: Basic concepts of CAD and CAM, Geometric modeling, CNC; Automation in Manufacturing; Industrial Robots – configurations, drives and controls; Cellular manufacturing and FMS – Group Technology, CAPP.

Section 5: Quality and Reliability

  • Metrology and Inspection: Accuracy and precision; Types of errors; Limits, fits and tolerances; Gauge design, Interchangeability, Selective assembly; Linear, angular, and form measurements (straightness, flatness, roundness, runout and cylindricity) by mechanical and optical methods; Inspection of screw threads and gears; Surface roughness measurement by contact and non-contact methods.
  • Quality Management: Quality – concept and costs; Statistical quality control – process capability analysis, control charts for variables and attributes and acceptance sampling; Six sigma; Total quality management; Quality assurance and certification - ISO 9000, ISO14000.
  • Reliability and Maintenance: Reliability, availability and maintainability; Distribution of failure and repair times; Determination of MTBF and MTTR, Reliability models; Determination of system reliability; Preventive and predictive maintenance and replacement, Total productive maintenance.

Section 6: Industrial Engineering

  • Product Design and Development: Principles of product design, tolerance design; Quality and cost considerations; Product life cycle; Standardization, simplification, diversification; Value engineering and analysis; Concurrent engineering; Design for “X”.
  • Work System Design: Taylor’s scientific management, Gilbreths’s contributions; Productivity – concepts and measurements; Method study, Micro-motion study, Principles of motion economy; Work measurement – time study, Work sampling, Standard data, PMTS; Ergonomics; Job evaluation and merit rating.
  • Facility Design: Facility location factors and evaluation of alternate locations; Types of plant layout and their evaluation; Computer aided layout design techniques; Assembly line balancing; Materials handling systems.

Section 7: Operations research and Operations management

  • Operation Research: Linear programming – problem formulation, simplex method, duality and sensitivity analysis; Transportation and assignment models; Integer programming; Constrained and unconstrained nonlinear optimization; Markovian queuing models; Simulation – manufacturing applications.
  • Engineering Economy and Costing: Elementary cost accounting and methods of depreciation; Break-even analysis; Techniques for evaluation of capital investments; Financial statements; Activity based costing.
  • Production control: Forecasting techniques – causal and time series models, moving average, exponential smoothing, trend and seasonality; Aggregate production planning; Master production scheduling; MRP, MRP-II and ERP; Routing, scheduling and priority dispatching; Push and pull production systems, concepts of Lean and JIT manufacturing systems; Logistics, distribution, and supply chain management; Inventory – functions, costs, classifications, deterministic inventory models, quantity discount; Perpetual and periodic inventory control systems.
  • Project management: Scheduling techniques – Gantt chart, CPM, PERT and GERT.

Direct link to download GATE Production and Industrial Engineering (PI) syllabus PDF 

Weightage Important Topics

Weightage of GATE 2021 Production and Industrial Engineering Syllabus

  • Sample Question 1: In a country of 1400 million population, 70% own mobile phones. Among the mobile phone owners, only 294 million access the Internet. Among these Internet users, only half buy goods from e-commerce portals. What is the percentage of these buyers in the country?
  • Sample Question 2: The link lengths of a planar four bar mechanism are AB = 100 mm, BC = 25 mm, CD = 75 mm and DA = 90 mm. For achieving the full rotation of both the input (crank) as
    well as the output (follower) links, the link that needs to be fixed is ______________?
  • Sample Question 3: For a classical (Wilson) model of determining economic order quantity (EOQ), the carrying and ordering costs are Cr and Co, respectively. For an annual demand D, the minimum yearly total inventory cost is _____________?
Topics Weightage (Marks)
Industrial Engineering 25-30
Production Engineering 30-40
General Engineering 15-20
Mathematics & Aptitude 25-30

Also Check GATE Paper Analysis


Best Books for GATE PI

Important Books for GATE 2021 Production and Industrial Engineering

PI Books
 Title of the book   Name of the Author/ Publication
GATE 2020 – Guide – Production and Industrial Engineering GKP
GATE 2020 – Solved Papers – Production and Industrial Engineering GKP

GATE Exam Pattern of PI

GATE 2021 Exam Pattern of Production and Industrial Engineering

GATE Exam Pattern is defined paper wise depending upon candidates’ discipline. There are some important points of GATE 2021 Exam Pattern

  • GATE consists 3 sections namely General Aptitude, Engineering Mathematics and specific subject of the paper
  • The question paper comprises total 65 questions.
  • There is two types of questions in GATE i.e. Multiple Choice type (MCQ), MSQs, and Numerical Answer Type (NAT).
  • Questions will be asked in random order and one has to select the answer (for MCQ type) and enter the answer for numerical answer type question using a mouse on a virtual keyboard.
  • Students have to attempt all the questions in a duration of three hours. 
  • The maximum number of questions in GATE are from the core subject.
  • There is no negative marking for NAT questions but it is applicable for MCQs.  
  • For 1 mark MCQs, 1/3 marks will be deducted for every wrong answer. Likewise, for 2 marks MCQs, 2/3 marks will be deducted.
Sectional Weightage
General Aptitude 15% of the total marks
Engineering Mathematics 13% of the total marks
PI – Subject-Based 72% of the total marks

How to Prepare for GATE PI Paper?

Preparation Tips for GATE 2021 Production and Industrial Engineering

1. Knowledge of Exam Pattern & Syllabus

The first step in your preparation is to collect the right information about the exam pattern and syllabus. Candidates can download the syllabus prescribed by the authorities by visiting the official website of GATE. After that with the release of official notification candidates can check the right exam pattern also. Till that time candidates can refer to the syllabus and exam pattern provided above which exactly the same as prescribed by the exam conducting body.

2. Clarity of Basic Concepts

  • Understanding basic concepts is very important before moving on to another topic.
  • Take the help of standard books for making your basics strong.
  • Candidates are advised to refer their graduation level books and notes.

3. Practice Papers

  • Take the help of practice papers and try to solve as many papers.
  • Practice papers will give you an idea about exam pattern, weightage of questions, the difficulty level of questions, types of questions, etc. 
  • Candidates can also take the mock tests which are similar to real paper and are online. 

Download GATE Practice Papers

​4. Checking the Level of Preparation

  • Candidates have to self analyze their level of preparation. 
  • Observe your weaker areas or sections in which you need to put more effort.
  • After attempting a mock test or practice paper, candidates can check their rank using  GATE Rank Predictor.  This way you can judge your performance. 

5. Prepare notes

  • Making notes during your preparation is very helpful. Candidates are advised to make notes on every topic that you cover.
  • Notes help in memorizing things easily.
  • You can revise topics at any time with the help of your short notes.

GATE Syllabus Of Other Papers

GATE 2021 Syllabus Of Other Papers

If you are planning to prepare for GATE then you must follow these preparation tips. These tips will help you to complete the exam syllabus. Collect all the study material and go through it again & again and get familiar with it. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Ques: How many topics do I need to prepare from engineering mathematics in GATE Production and Industrial Engineering syllabus?

Ans: The topics that you need to prepare from engineering mathematics in GATE Production and Industrial Engineering syllabus are:

  • Linear Algebra
  • Calculus
  • Differential equations
  • Complex variables
  • Probability and Statistics
  • Numerical Methods

Ques: Is general engineering and engineering mathematics are the same topics in GATE Production and Industrial Engineering?

Ans: No. Both are different from each other. Engineering mathematics section is common or a mandatory section in some of the GATE disciplines whereas general engineering is only the part of GATE Production and Industrial Engineering syllabus. The topics of general engineering are:

  • Engineering Materials
  • Applied Mechanics
  • Theory of Machines and Design
  • Thermal and FluidsEngineering

Ques: What is the exam pattern of GATE Production and Industrial Engineering?

Ans: The exam of GATE Production and Industrial Engineering is similar to other disciplines of GATE. There are 3 sections namely General Aptitude, Engineering Mathematics, and specific subject of the paper The question paper comprises a total of 65 questions. There are two types of questions in GATE i.e. Multiple Choice type (MCQ) and Numerical Answer Type (NAT). Students have to attempt all the questions in a duration of three hours. There is no negative marking for NAT questions but it is applicable for MCQs. 

Ques: Which books are referred to by Production and Industrial Engineering students?

Ans: Other than graduation level books the following books referred by candidates are:

GATE 2020 – Guide – Production and Industrial Engineering GKP
GATE 2020 – Solved Papers – Production and Industrial Engineering GKP

Ques: Are there any coaching centers that provide GATE coaching?

Ans: Yes. There are various coaching centers that provide online and classroom both types of coaching to candidates. Some of them are The GATE Academy, Made Easy, Gradeup, Unacademy etc. 

*The article might have information for the previous academic years, which will be updated soon subject to the notification issued by the University/College.

GATE 2021 : 42 answered questions

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Ques. What do you prefer, the GATE or the IES?

● Top Answer By Keshav Jindal on 25 Feb 21

Ans. I would prefer GATE or IES because in GATE the ratio is 10:1 whereas in IES the ratio is 300:1. This makes IES a very tough competitive exam but in GATE it is easier to get good marks and rank higher as the paper is easy and less competitive compared to IES.  The IES exam is tougher than GATE because here a candidate has to excel both in academics and personality. In GATE the questions are concept based and it is easier to solve if all the concepts are clear. Also in the GATE exam, there are 65 questions and the time limit is 3 hours but in the IES exam there are 120 questions and the time limit is 2 hours. So you get less time to solve all the questions.  After qualifying for your GATE exam with good marks, you can apply to any of the big companies with higher packages and it also opens your gate to apply for PSU.   After qualifying for your IES exam, you will get a job as an assistant executive engineer and after 3-4 years of experience, you will get promoted to executive engineer post. Then after many years of experience of like 20+ years, you will get Chief Engineer posts.Read more
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Ques. What is the pattern for the written test for M.Tech at IIT Gandhinagar?

● Top Answer By Kumar Shiwam on 24 Feb 21

Ans. The admission for M. Tech at IIT Gandhinagar is done on the basis of academic records, written test, personal interview, and valid GATE scores. Those students who have a good academic record along with good GATE scores are not supposed to appear in the written test and personal interview.  The pattern of the written test is as follows: 10 questions of General aptitude questions consisting of logical analytical and reasoning ability and engineering mathematics are asked. 15-20 questions are asked related to basic courses in various disciplines up to the third year of an undergraduate program. The total duration of the written test is 1 hour for 80 marks. A total of 40 marks for general aptitude and 40 for basic knowledge. There is a negative marking and very basic questions are asked in the test. For branch subjects, all questions are asked related to SOM, fluid mechanics, etc.  The reservation category will get relaxation in the cut-off marks as per the norms. You will also be entitled to and fro sleeper class train tickets for the shortest route from your hometown to the institute. If you pass the test then you will attend the interview on the same day.Read more
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Ques. What are the best coaching centres for GATE and IES in Civil Engineering?

● Top Answer By Sabeer Chalana on 23 Feb 21

Ans. There are many coaching centers throughout the country for IES and GATE coaching. However, these 2 institutes enjoy a huge reputation and recognition at the national level due to their experienced faculty and their study material quality. Made Easy: It is one of the best in the field when it comes to GATE and IES coaching. They have the best faculty teaching the subjects for the students.  Their specialty lies in their high quality and concise presentation. One of my friends enrolled in the Delhi center weekend coaching program, which he claimed to be good. Their online test series is one of the best you can opt for. They are prepared keeping the present pattern in mind. The number of students enrolled is hefty and gives you a clear picture of the competition. Some criticize that their teaching lacks depth compared to other institutes. Their courses and tests require analytical knowledge and are more than enough to crack GATE/IES exams. IES Masters: This institute is one of the best in this field and has earned respect for its excellence and quality coaching within a short span of its inception. All the major subjects for all batches are handled by Mr. Kanchan Thakur who is the director of the institute. He has a brilliant command over all the subjects in Civil engineering. The study material of this institute is best and is even recommended for those who choose civil engineering as an optional subject in UPSC exams. One small setback is that other faculties than the director are not on par when compared with the faculties of Made Easy. For the GATE Online test series, you can opt for Made easy test series, and for the IES test series you can opt for IES Masters. If you plan to join made easy to enroll in Super Talent Batch which has all top faculties teaching in this batch. For Classroom coaching for civil engineering in GATE/IES, Super talent batch can be preferred if not then IES Masters. For Postal study course, one can opt for IES masters.Read more
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Ques. Which will be a better career for ECE engineers, IBPS SO or PSU via the GATE?

● Top Answer By Vaishnavi Agrawal on 19 Feb 21

Ans. Some of my friends work in both the departments and based on their experience, I can answer this. If you look at the position of an IBPS SO, it's that of a specialist officer. You'd technically be a network administrator of all of the intra networks of the bank. You'd be a database administrator/database manager who would have the entire intra network of that particular bank under your supervision.  Now if you look at the PSU job, you'd be someone who would be responsible for sustaining the technicalities concerning PSU. Your enquiry on which one is better entirely is up to you and where your interest lies. While some might opt for GATE which concerns their core subjects entirely, others simply might find their area of interest in networking. So, decide for yourself and choose what suits you and not the rest.Read more
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Ques. What is the difference between IES and GATE?

● Top Answer By Himani Arora on 17 Feb 21

Ans. GATE and IES, are very well known among graduate engineers. The IES exam is carried out annually by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) and the GATE exam is administered by Bangalore's Indian Institute of Science (IISc) or any of the seven IITs. Syllabus and paper pattern: The complete engineering syllabus is covered by the IES exam, while GATE covers a portion of this syllabus and some other topics useful for higher studies.  While GATE tests problem-solving ability, IES tests conceptual capability.  The IES exam paper contains questions of the objective and subjective type and a total of 4 papers, while the GATE exam paper only contains questions of the objective type and only 1 paper.  Only in the subjective paper, a calculator is allowed. Difficulty Level & Duration: It will be much more difficult to solve the questions you will face in GATE than in IES.  In a single problem, GATE questions require you to apply many concepts. For that, you should have good problem-solving skills.  While most of the questions asked in IES are direct formula or a single concept based. In GATE, in 3 hours, you have to solve 65 questions that are approximately 2.5 minutes per question.  On the other hand, you have 120 questions in 2 hours to solve in IES. So, 1 minute per question which means you get nearly 2.5 times more “time” per question in GATE. But the difficulty level compensates for it. Category of PSUs and Job Scope: UPSC conducts IES examination to recruit candidates under the Govt for different engineering departments (mechanical, electrical, civil, and E&T).  Around India, The departments you get through IES are Indian Railway Service of Engineers, Indian Railway Stores Service, Indian Ordnance Factories Service AWM/JTS., Central Electrical and Mechanical Engineering Service, Geological Survey of India Engineering Service Gr ‘A’, Central Engineering Service (Roads), Gr ‘A’, Central Water Engineering Service Gr ‘A’, Indian Defence Service of Engineers, Central Power Engineering Service Gr ‘B’ and so on. The GATE exam is organized for higher studies (M.tech., PH. Ed. etc) and for placements in PSUs and Govt. Organizations. From the above-mentioned factual information, the difference between the two should be clear. Rest all depends on your choice what you opt for.Read more
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