In the recently announced INAE Young Engineer awards for the year 2017, three scientists from the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, feature among the 10 winners. The Institute bagged the highest number of awards followed by one award each for ISRO and the IITs at Bombay, Guwahati, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kanpur and Madras. This national award is given each year to Indian scientists under 35 years of their age, working in broad fields of engineering and applied sciences. The award presentation ceremony will take place during the INAE Annual Convention, to be held at Chennai between 15th and 16th of December 2017.
Dr. Mayank Shrivastava, an Assistant Professor at the Department of Electronic Systems Engineering at IISc, is one of the recipients of the award this year for his work on Nanoelecetronics and Power Semiconductors. In few path-breaking works, he and his research team have broken several technology records, including the world record in graphene transistor performance, reported in recent years. He has also patented several technologies that are being used by leading semiconductor industries like Intel.
“I work at the two extremes of what is called microelectronics. At one end of micro-nanoelectronics, I work on devices that are very tiny, of the order of few nanometers, which is around a billionth of a meter. The other extreme is power semiconductors, which deals with large sized semiconductor devices for very high powers – say 100s to few kilowatts”, says Prof. Shrivastava talking about his work.
Dr. Arpita Patra, an Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer Science and Automation and Dr. Praveen Kumar, an Assistant Professor at the Department of Materials Engineering, IISc, are the other winners of the award. Dr. Patra works on cryptography and secure distributed computing whereas Dr. Kumar works on mechanical behaviour of materials, mechanics and materials related reliability issues in microelectronics packages, and electromigration.
Awarded by the Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE), a consortium of the most distinguished engineers in government, academia and industry, the INAE Young Engineer award is an annual award given to 10 young engineers every year. The winners are nominated by a panel of distinguished Fellows of INAE, based on prescribed criteria. The winners will receive a cash prize of one lakh rupees and inclusion into the INAE as Young Associates.
These awards, apart from recognising path-breaking research in India, also serve as a source of motivation for the awardees. “These initiatives are good because it encourages one to keep doing better. Moreover, they spread awareness about good works being carried out in India, which encourages young minds – if the works are communicated well with the non-scientific community. It feels good when a broader community recognizes your work. However, at the same time, the award should not be the criteria for judging a scientist’s work. The award will happen naturally if you are doing good work. ” opines Prof. Shrivastava talking about how he feels about the award.