Nikhil Koratkar

John A. Clark and Edward T. Crossan Chair Professor
Mechanical, Aerospace and Nuclear Engineering
Nikhil Koratkar's research has focused on the synthesis, characterization, and application of nanoscale materials. This includes graphene, carbon nanotubes, transition metal dichalcogenides, phosphorene, tellurene as well as metal and silicon nanostructures produced by a variety of techniques such as mechanical exfoliation, chemical vapor deposition, and oblique angle sputter and e-beam deposition. Nikhil is studying the fundamental mechanical, electrical, thermal, optical and optoelectronic properties of these one dimensional (1D) and two-dimensional (2D) materials and developing a variety of composites, coating and energy storage device applications using these materials. Nikhil Koratkar has co-authored over 240 archival journal publications. These include 2 in Nature, 1 in Science, 1 in Nature Reviews Materials, 3 in Nature Materials, 4 in Nature Communications and 2 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. To date, Nikhil’s papers have received > 35,000 citations (Google Scholar) and his H-index is 91. Over his career, Nikhil has secured 40 research grants (with 36 as Principal Investigator), totaling ~$11 Million. Twenty-two of these grants are from the USA National Science Foundation (NSF). These funds were used to primarily support Ph.D. students and to date a total of 29 Ph.D. students have graduated with Nikhil Koratkar as their thesis advisor. His former students are employed by some of the world’s most successful companies including Apple, Google, Tesla, GE, Boeing, Samsung, Exxon Mobil, Intel and IBM. Two of his former students are also full professors in academia. Nikhil is very active in the materials and energy storage (battery) communities. Since 2010, he has served as an Editor of Carbon. In 2009, Nikhil won the Electrochemical Society’s SES Young Investigator Award for research excellence and in 2015, Nikhil was honored by the American Society of Mechanical Engineering (ASME) with their Gustus Larson Memorial Award for research excellence. In 2016, Nikhil was elected ASME Fellow. In 2018 and in 2021, Nikhil was named by Clarivate Analytics in their Highly Cited Researchers List (Top 1% by citations). In 2019, Nikhil was awarded the Distinguished Alumnus Award by his alma mater, the Indian Institute of Technology- Bombay and in 2021, he was awarded the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute’s William H. Wiley 1866 Distinguished Faculty Award. In 2021, Nikhil was elected Fellow of the American Association for Advancement of Science (AAAS) and in 2023, he was elected Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS). Over 100 media reports citing Nikhil Koratkar’s work have appeared in major outlets such as: NY Times, USA today, MSNBC, Nature News, Scientific American, Popular Science, Popular Mechanics, Indian Express, the Economic Times and US News & World Report. Nikhil has been interviewed by BBC Radio and Northeast Public Radio and by CBS and ABC TV News in Albany, NY. The National Science Foundation has also issued three separate Press Releases based on his work in nano-composites, Lithium-ion batteries and graphene. Nikhil Koratkar’s work in battery materials is finding important practical applications. He has five Patents and several pending patent applications. He is a co-founder and serves on the advisory board of a battery start-up company (Alsym Energy), which has invented and is commercializing a new class of non-flammable, non-toxic, low-cost and sustainable batteries for stationary storage, maritime, and automotive applications. Alsym Energy is based out of Woburn, MA and has successfully completed a Series C (~$78 Million) funding round, employs over 50 full-time employees, and has begun the full-fledged manufacturing of battery prototypes for customer evaluation.
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