Hyderabad: Dr. Surajit Dhara, faculty in the School of Physics, University of Hyderabad (UoH), has been selected for the prestigious Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar (SSB) Prize for Science and Technology, 2020. The award is named after the founder-director of the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR) India, the late Dr (Sir) Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar. The prize is given each year for outstanding contributions in science and technology.

Dr. Dhara was selected for the award on the basis of his contributions primarily in India during the last five years in the area of physical sciences. The prize is bestowed on a person, who, in the opinion of CSIR, has made important and outstanding contributions to human knowledge and progress – fundamental and applied – in the particular field of endeavour, which is his/her specialisation.

SSB prizes, each of the value of Rs 5,00,000 (Rupees 5 lakh only), are awarded annually to notable and outstanding research, applied or fundamental, in the following disciplines: (i) biological sciences, (ii) chemical sciences, (iii) earth, atmosphere, ocean and planetary sciences, (iv) engineering sciences, (v) mathematical sciences, (vi) medical sciences and (vii) physical sciences. In addition, the CSIR will grant an honorarium of Rs15,000 per month.

Dr. Dhara has carried out intensive research and made outstanding contributions in emerging and diverse areas of LC science and technology spanning colloids with tunable interaction and controlled assembly in liquid crystals; topological colloids with 2-dimensional motility and tunable direction of motion; development of liquid crystal droplet-based tunable microresonators and microlasers.

Dr. Dhara had earlier received the following awards:

Swarnajayanti Fellowship Award (2015) by the Department of Science and Technology

Chancellor’s Award for contributions in teaching and research (2013)

N. S. Satya Murty Memorial Award in Physics for Young Scientists (2012) by the Indian Physics Association in recognition of the understanding of structure-property correlation in unconventional nematic liquid crystals.

Michi-Nakata Prize (2010) by International Liquid Crystal Society for the Early Career Achievement in recognition of the discovery of discontinuous transition of nematic liquid crystal on an amorphous perfluoropolymer surface and the development of this discovery from both the fundamental and application perspective.

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