Aakhash Sundaresan has joined the IITB-Monash Research Academy in the Spring 2020-2021 intake. He originates from SASTRA Deemed University (Thanjavur), having completed his B.Tech in Aerospace Engineering in 2020. In addition to the B.Tech course, he was also involved in carrying out active Research at Turbulence & Flow Control Lab at SASTRA Deemed University and cleared GATE 2020. He has attended a national and an international conference on Aerospace technologies and Wind Engineering. He was given an opportunity to present his research work on “Aerodynamic Effects of Ice accretion on the airfoil”. Apart from academia, his life centres on mastering the interiority and realization of the self from various dimensions, in correspondence to sharpening the saw before using it as a perfect tool to carry out the desired work. In addition, he is inclined more towards nature and he is a Carnatic vocalist, having the love to listen to music which greatly soothes the soul. He has a great technique to find out solutions to problems from simple to complex, by looking at those problems from other’s perspective, rather than self-centred ideologies. All in all, he is focused and very well organized from beneath his mental realm. Uniting his personal, mental and academic skills; alongside the strength of the Academy to deliver quality Doctoral graduates, he envisaged that joining the IITB-Monash Research Academy would be a wise choice for his joint Ph.D. degree in the chosen field.
Link to student’s project: IMURA0959
Shuvayan Banerjee has finished his master’s at IIT Bombay in Applied Statistics and Infometrics. He hails from Kolkata, West Bengal where he was born and brought up. From childhood, 3 things has interested Shuvayan – Cricket, Computer gaming and the question “Why?”. To find the answer of this question Why?, shuvayan has decided to pursue a career in PhD.
Coming to academic, Shuvayan was never the best student in his class throughout his school life but he has been able to improve throughout his life thereby ending up doing his masters at IIT Bombay. Maths and Computer Programming has always been his favourites and he has ended up doing his Masters Thesis In Compressed Sensing under Prof. Ajit Rajwade and Prof. Radhe Srivastava of IIT Bombay.
Apart from academic, Shuvayan loves sleeping. He spends around 9-10 hours a day sleeping. Second favourite is PC gaming. PC gaming is something Shuvayan has done throughout his childhood and into his higher studies and doesn’t intend to stop. Being a lazy individual, the only time a burst of energy enters his body is when someone asks him to play Cricket or maybe Football (not that good at football).
Link to student’s project: IMURA0939
With a strong inclination to pursue Bachelor’s in Pure Sciences, Sanika was instantly captivated by Physics and then further went on to do her master’s in Physics with a specialisation in Material Sciences from Institute of Chemical Technology so as to have more research exposure in an interdisciplinary field. She believes that her research experience in master’s programme traced out a trajectory that has led her to a research field which is at the interface of various disciplines. Aligned with that background, at the Academy she will be working in the field of sustainable energy materials that will judiciously put to use her research experience and theoretical concepts of Physics as well as Material Sciences. During her tenure at the IIT Bombay Monash Research Academy, she will be “Discovering new lead-free perovskites for photovoltaic and photocatalysis applications” using advanced high-throughput ab-initio computational techniques under the supervision of Prof. Aftab Alam (IIT Bombay), Prof. Alexandr N. Simonov (Monash University) and Prof. Jacek Jasieniak (Monash University). Apart from academics, she is fond of painting, sketching, gardening, snippet writing and occasionally skimming through ancient archaeological findings in her meantime.
Link to student’s project: IMURA0951
Jaydeep Das has joined the IITB-MONASH Research Academy as a PhD student in the December 2020 intake under the supervision of Professor Prakriti Tayalia (IITB) and Professor Neil Cameron (Monash University) to fulfil his dream of becoming an independent researcher while making a meaningful contribution to scientific community. He is a biotech enthusiast at heart and wants to employ technological advancements to tackle global health challenges. He strongly believes that the joint PhD program offered by IITB and Monash university will provide him cutting edge infrastructural setup, the skills and mentorship from the best in the field of material science to fulfil his quest of helping cancer patients. He hails from the city of joy, Kolkata. He completed his undergraduate degree in Microbiology (H) from University of Calcutta, Kolkata and post-graduate degree in Biotechnology from VIT University, Vellore. His dissertation work at Dr. B.C. Guha Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, Calcutta University, was primarily focused on understanding the role Casein Kinase II on Chandipura Virus (CHPV) Infection. After completing his masters, he joined DBT-IPLS Imaging facility at University of Calcutta as a technical officer where he was responsible for handling and maintaining a laser scanning confocal microscope (OLYMPUS FLOWVIEW 1000). The next step towards his scientific journey was at Syngene International Ltd., Bangalore, through a Govt. of India sponsored Biotech Industrial Training Program (DBT-BITP). Working as a Research Associate at Syngene he carried out interdisciplinary pre-clinical studies on inflammatory and auto-immune disorders and performed efficacy studies with new chemical entities (NCEs). His latest stint following the industrial research was at TATA Translational Cancer Research Centre (TTCRC) Kolkata where he along with a group of clinicians and scientists was trying to understand the impact of Extracellular Matrix (ECM) stiffness on the pathogenesis of Gallbladder cancer. Simultaneously, he was also trying to develop a robust and reproducible biomaterial based 3D cell culture model system for phenotypic drug screening. Apart from harbouring scientific inquisitiveness he is passionate about digital arts, photography, travelling, trekking, latest gadgets and gizmos. As per his friends he is a conscientious listener and a go-to person during testing times. He firmly believes good food and music can solve any problem in life.
Link to student’s project: IMURA0904
Gokul Prasad hails from Dehradun, Uttarakhand. He completed his B.Tech in Civil Engineering from Graphic Era University, Dehradun and Masters in Water Resource Engineering from SVNIT, Surat. Afterwards he works as a Junior Research Fellow for 2 years at National Institute of Hydrology, Roorkee. Their he was working in Groundwater aquifer salinity and management project in rural villages of Mewat, Haryana which are affected by severe groundwater salinity problem. His work has been published in peer- reviewed journals, book chapters and also presented in various National and International conferences. At IITB-Monash Research Academy he is working on “Groundwater depletion scenario for India – use of Isotopes and modelling” under the supervision of Prof. Pennan Chinnasamy (IIT, Bombay) and Prof. Ian Cartwright (Monash University). Outside the academic work, he likes mountain trekking, reading history and science non-fiction books and playing chess.
Link to student’s project: IMURA0930
Afsal Najeeb is an electrical engineer by training and holds a Masters degree in Technology and Development from CTARA, Indian Institute of Technology Bombay. His area of interests includes renewable energy microgirds, participatory design of rural electrification systems and energy policy analysis. He was associated with the IT and Systems area of Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode, where he worked as a Research Associate, working on projects related to renewable energy business models, product innovation and machine learning. Besides academics, he is an ardent traveler and writes on forums like Quora.
Link to student’s project: IMURA0880
Sucharita Banerjee has joined the IITB- Monash Research Academy PhD programme in the December 2020-21 intake. She graduated from Kolkata with a B.Tech degree in the stream of Biotechnology from Heritage Institute of Technology (2018). She has had experiences of multiple interdisciplinary internships ranging from fields like Cancer Biology, Protein Engineering and Chemistry, Bioscience and Bioprocess Engineering etc. at institutes like Indian Institute of Engineering, Science and Technology (IIEST), IIT Kharagpur, Tata Medical Centre, Kolkata etc. Upon clearing GATE 2018 she commenced her M.Tech (2018-20) in Biotechnology at BITS PILANI (University). At IITB-Monash Research Academy, she is currently working on a project titled “Investigating the link between anti-microbial activity and amyloid formation in frog Peptides” under the supervision of Prof. Ajay S Panwar (IIT Bombay) and Prof. Lisandra Martin (Monash University). Apart from academia, her life majorly revolves around family, friends and music. She is a trained classical singer, reading books, magazines, watching series and movies, playing badminton keeps her motivated and occupied. She loves interacting with new people, is an animal lover, follows a simple motto in life of “Live, laugh and love”, wishes to make her contribution to Science, and make this world a better place free from the agony of incurable diseases, and filled with joy and kindness.
Link to student’s project: IMURA0956
Zaid Yaqoob Mir Rangrez earned his B.E. in Civil Engineering from University of Kashmir in 2016. Thereafter, he did a voluntary internship for a period of one year at Road Research and Material Testing Laboratory, Design Inspection & Quality Control Department, Srinagar. He earned his M.Tech. in Structural Engineering from National Institute of Technology Srinagar in 2019. His Master’s thesis focused on the development of a Graphite based Conductive concrete mix for the application of improvised de-icing of concrete overlays. Prior to joining the IITB-Monash Academy, he worked as a Lecturer in the Department of Civil Engineering at Govt. College of Engineering and Technology, Safapora, Ganderbal, Kashmir. At the Academy, he would be working, as a Doctoral candidate, on the Project titled ‘Machine Learning for Improved Value of Information of Structural Health Monitoring’ under the supervision of Prof. Jayadipta Ghosh (IIT Bombay), Prof. Colin Caprani (Monash University) and Prof. Siddhartha Ghosh (IIT Bombay).
Link to student’s project: IMURA0926
Varun is an ambitious Mechanical Engineer having a conspicuous aim to unswervingly serve the mankind by working on socially acceptable solutions. He belongs to Punjab, a state with five rivers in Northern India. He successfully completed his Bachelor of Engineering as well as Master of Engineering with specialization in Mechanical Engineering from Chitkara University. While pursuing his master’s course, he also got an opportunity to work as a Research and Teaching Assistant at Department of Mechanical Engineering. During master’s he worked on “A Cognitive Framework on Object Recognition and Localization for Robotic Vision” that outcomes the vision-based static robot manipulator suitable for pick and place operation which is preceded by vision based algorithms meant for object recognition and localization. Through his work, he simplified the interaction between man and machine by appending the cognitive abilities into traditional monotonous systems. During the work tenure, he has presented two research papers in international conferences, published two exercise books, and applied for two utility plus one design patent.
At The Academy, he is pursuing his Ph.D. on the project titled “AgriBot: Agriculture Inspection Robot –Design and Control” under the aegis of Prof. Anirban Guha (Supervisor, IITB), Prof. Maryam Shojaei Baghini (Co-supervisor, IITB), and Prof. Sunita Chauhan (Supervisor, Monash University). When Varun is not in his laboratory, he loves to play badminton or volleyball and sometimes he also share his learning’s through YouTube Channel “MechE Inside”.
Link to student’s project: IMURA0872
Diksha has always believed in the confluence of passion and academic merit. She completed her Bachelor’s degree in Zoology from the University of Delhi. After clearing the IIT-JAM examination, she joined Indian institute of technology, Roorkee (IITR) for a Master’s degree in Biotechnology. She completed her dissertation under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Pravindra Kumar, Macromolecular crystallography unit, IITR. Her dissertation was titled- ‘Characterization of interactions between Phthalate dioxygenase and Phthalate dioxygenase reductase’ and involved comprehending the interactions between the first enzyme complex in Phthalate degradation pathway. Her project at academy titled ‘Importin alpha and beta from apicomplexan parasites: structure, function and screening for inhibitors’ epitomizes her interest in drug discovery and structural biology. She is being guided in her scientific peregrinations by Prof. Dr. Swati Patankar and Dr. Prasenjit Bhaumik from IIT Bombay, and Prof. Dr. David Jans from Monash University. An avid bibliophile, she spends her leisure hours generally reading books, writing blogs, and striving for adventurous experiences.
Link to student’s project: IMURA0929