Yogesh (Yogi) Surendranath, an Associate Professor of Chemistry at Paul M. Cook Career Development at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has been nominated for the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) by the Department of Defense for the year 2019.
President Trump announced the recipients of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) earlier this month. Indian-Americans dominated the list from all across the country.
The Surendranath Lab is focused on addressing global challenges in the areas of chemical catalysis, energy storage and utilization, and environmental stewardship.
PECASE is the highest honor bestowed by the United States Government to outstanding scientists and engineers who are beginning their independent research careers and who show exceptional promise for leadership in science and technology.
Established in 1996, the PECASE acknowledges the contributions scientists and engineers have made to the advancement of science, technology, education, and mathematics (STEM) education and to community service as demonstrated through scientific leadership, public education, and community outreach. The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy coordinates the PECASE with participating departments and agencies.
Yogesh (Yogi) Surendranath holds dual bachelor’s degrees in chemistry and physics from the University of Virginia and a PhD in inorganic chemistry from MIT.His research group aims to use renewable electricity to rearrange chemical bonds by controlling interfacial reactivity at the molecular level. Professor Surendranath has authored over 50 publications and is the recipient of young investigator awards from the NSF, DOE, Air Force, and Toyota. He is also a Sloan Foundation Fellow and Cottrell Scholar.
One in nine people on the planet lack access to safe drinking water and three in nine lack access to adequate sanitation leading to more than 3.5 million deaths each year. Water quality and sanitation can be significantly improved in resource-constrained locations such as rural India by developing distributed technologies for generating hydrogen peroxide, a potent clean oxidant that is ideal for water purification, waste water treatment, and broad-spectrum sanitation. The Surendranath Group is developing a new portable technology that uses solar or wind electricity to generating hydrogen peroxide from water and air. The Group is actively collaborating with Prof. Alan Hatton (MIT Chemical Engineering) to advance the technology to the prototype stage on an aggressive timeline.