Press Release 095/2023

First „International Excellence Award” of KIT Goes to Chemist Thalappil Pradeep

Indian top researcher is awarded funds for equipment in the amount of up to EUR 50,000 for his work on nanomaterials
2023_095_Erster International Excellence Award des KIT geht an Chemiker Thalappil Pradeep_72dpi
Next year, Indian chemist Thalappil Pradeep will stay at KIT for an up-to-six-months research period. (Photo: Thalappil, IIT)

Professor Thalappil Pradeep from the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT) in Chennai is awarded the first “International Excellence Award of KIT” and the “Fellowship of SCHROFF Foundation”. With these awards, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) honors the renowned chemist and his fundamental research in the field of nanoscience and the application of novel nanomaterials for drinking water purification. The award also includes an invitation to stay at KIT.   

Thalappil Pradeep’s research focuses on investigating and unveiling the fundamental properties of metallic nanoparticles and of derived materials using various experimental and theoretical methods. Building on the findings gained, he and his team at the IIT recently succeeded in developing novel nanomaterials for drinking water purification. Access to clean drinking water is still a problem in many parts of the world. Pradeep’s group uses water filters on a nanochemical basis to remove pesticides and other contaminants from the drinking water. These filters are a sustainable and cost-effective solution that already benefits several millions of people in India today. 

For his work, Thalappil Pradeep receives the “International Excellence Award of KIT” and the “Fellowship of SCHROFF Foundation”, which includes an invitation for a six-month stay at KIT next year. “We are very pleased to welcome Thalappil Pradeep as an excellent nanoscientist at KIT,” says Professor Oliver Kraft, representing the President of KIT. “This award is presented to a highly committed scientist who goes beyond his own field of work to investigate future-oriented topics. At the same time, we are intensifying international exchange and top-level research at KIT.”    

“The International Excellence Award is a means to create a research environment that appeals to scientists and researchers from all over the world,” adds Professor Thomas Hirth, KIT’s Vice President for Transfer and International Affairs. “It is true that international collaboration in science is absolutely necessary to manage the global societal challenges of the 21st century.” 

Long-standing Collaboration between KIT and IIT 

In addition to the research stay, the prize includes a scholarship with a duration of up to one year for an accompanying junior researcher from Pradeep’s study group as well as funds for equipment of up to EUR 50,000 for conducting a research project at the host institute of KIT. 
“We look back on a long-standing tradition of institutional collaboration between Chennai and Karlsruhe,” says Professor Manfred Kappes, who heads the Division Physical Chemistry of Microscopic Systems at KIT. “Together with Professor Pradeep, we will pursue the extension of the interface between the mass spectrometry and nanomaterials equipment.” 

International Excellence Grants at KIT

The award is part of the International Excellence Grants (IEG) initiative within the framework of the successful University of Excellence concept of KIT. It is aimed at promoting international collaboration in top-level research and attracting international researchers to KIT.  

More information

Being “The Research University in the Helmholtz Association”, KIT creates and imparts knowledge for the society and the environment. It is the objective to make significant contributions to the global challenges in the fields of energy, mobility, and information. For this, about 10,000 employees cooperate in a broad range of disciplines in natural sciences, engineering sciences, economics, and the humanities and social sciences. KIT prepares its 22,800 students for responsible tasks in society, industry, and science by offering research-based study programs. Innovation efforts at KIT build a bridge between important scientific findings and their application for the benefit of society, economic prosperity, and the preservation of our natural basis of life. KIT is one of the German universities of excellence.

am, 20.11.2023

Margarete Lehné
Chief Press Officer (acting)
Phone: +49 721 608-41105
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