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IIT Madras Prof. RI Sujith from elected to US National Academy of Engineering

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CHENNAI : Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) faculty Prof. R. I. Sujith has been elected as an International Member of the United States National Academy of Engineering (NAE). He was elected in recognition of his contributions to engineering “for applications of dynamical systems theory to the understanding and control of instabilities in engineering systems.”

He is one of the 18 international members newly elected. The full list can be viewed on the following link – He is currently the D. Srinivasan Chair Professor at the Department of Aerospace Engineering, IIT Madras, and the Head of the Centre of Excellence for studying Critical Transitions in Complex Systems.

Speaking about the election to the academy, Prof. RI Sujith, D. Srinivasan Chair Professor, Department of Aerospace Engineering, IIT Madras, said, “I was pleasantly surprised to get this news this morning. I am really honoured to have been elected as a member of the National Academy of Engineering. I wish to thank all my teachers, students and collaborators, IIT Madras administration, the scientific community and my family that have supported me during my career.”

Election to the US National Academy of Engineering is among the highest professional distinctions accorded to an engineer.

Congratulating Prof. Sujith on this recognition, Prof. Raghunathan Rengaswamy, Dean (Global Engagement), IIT Madras, said, “This is a fantastic recognition for Prof. Sujith and really speaks to the kind of work that he has been able to do from IIT Madras. The Institute has also recently awarded his group a Center of Excellence (CoE) in Critical Transitions in Complex Systems and we expect world-class work from Prof. Sujith’s group to continue to emerge from this CoE.”

Prof. RI Sujith is the second Indian to be elected to the Aerospace Section of the National Academy of Engineering after Dr. B. N Suresh, who was the director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre, ISRO, from 2003-07. He also become the second IIT Madras professor who is elected to the National Academy of Engineering, after Prof. Ashok Jhunjhunwala.

Academy membership honors those who have made outstanding contributions to “engineering research, practice, or education, including, where appropriate, significant contributions to the engineering literature” and to “the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology, making major advancements in traditional fields of engineering, or developing/implementing innovative approaches to engineering education.”

Researchers from across the world have congratulated Prof. Sujith. Renowned combustion expert, Prof. C. K. Law from Princeton, said, “This is a recognition you highly deserve and I just feel so happy for the community.”

Prof. Chennupathi Jagadish, President of the Australian Academy of Science, said, “Hearty congratulations on your NAE member election. Well done and very well deserved recognition indeed.”

Prof. Madhav Marathe, Division Director of Network Systems Science and Advanced Computing (NSSAC) and Distinguished Professor in Biocomplexity at the University of Virginia, said, “I just saw that you have been elected to NAE here in the US. What an honor. It is exceedingly hard to be a foreign member and speaks volumes of your work. Congratulations on this well-deserved honor.”

Prof. Sujith has been honoured with many esteemed awards earlier. He is a Distinguished Fellow of the International Institute of Acoustics and Vibration (IIAV) and a Fellow of the Combustion Institute. Also he is a Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering and the Indian Academy of Sciences, and has been conferred the title of “TUM ambassador” of the Technical University of Munich. He is also a recipient of the Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship and the Hans Fischer Senior Fellowship of the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) of the Technical University of Munich. He has won the Young Engineer Award of the Indian National Academy of Engineering. He has been awarded the Swarnajayanti Fellowship and the J. C. Bose Fellowship by the Department of Science & Technology.

Prof. R. I. Sujith received his undergraduate degree in Aerospace Engineering from IIT Madras in 1988. He then graduated with an M. S. degree in 1990 and a Ph. D. in 1994, from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, USA. He has over 390 technical publications (including 207 refereed journal publications), 14 patents and has written a book on Thermoacoustic Instability. Prof. Sujith was the founding Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Spray and Combustion Dynamics from 2009-2015, and is currently a member of the editorial advisory board of Chaos: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Nonlinear Science. Prof. Sujith currently works on the application of dynamical systems and complex systems theory to study and mitigate thermoacoustic instability.