Two Women Scientists from Pune win National Awards for Chemistry and Astrophysics

Two women scientists from Pune have been selected for the Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB) awards for this year given annually by the Department of Science and Technology. They are Ruta Kale from TIFR – National Centre for Radio Astrophysics (NCRA) and Asha S K from CSIR – National Chemical Laboratory (NCL). They were awarded under the Physical and Chemical Sciences categories, respectively.

The Department of Science and Technology announced the awards on 12th February, Friday. It was the occasion of International Day for Women and Girls in science.

As an NCRA Reader, Ruta Kale was among the nine women scientists who bagged the SERB Women Excellence award 2022. She studies the evolution of radio galaxies and radio astronomy techniques. She has a PhD on ‘A multi-wavelength study of radio halos and relics in clusters of galaxies’ from the Raman Research Institute. She has served as a DST – INSPIRE faculty at NCRA between 2015 – 2017.

Asha S K heads the Polymer Science and Engineering Division at NCL. Her research group works on developing higher-ordered polymer architectures that have applications in optoelectronic devices like lasers, photodiodes, solar cells and LEDs.

Other SERB Excellence awardees this year are Binita Pathak (Earth and Atmospheric Sciences) of Dibrugarh University, Chandini U (Physical Sciences) from the Indian Institute of Science and Debashree Chakraborty (Chemical Sciences) of NIT-Suratkal.

Under Life Sciences the SERB Excellence awardees are Ashima Bhaskar from the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB), Nitika Sandhu from Punjab Agricultural University, Yogita Adlakha of Translational Health Science and Technology and Neha Khatri from CSIR – Central Scientific Instruments Organisation. Mudrika Khandelwal from IIT-Hyderabad was selected from the Engineering stream.

SERB Fellows are given a research grant of Rs 10 lakh for three years in addition to Rs 15,000 fellowship every month during this period.

Poorna Krishnan



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