Thakur awarded prestigious fellowship in electrical engineering

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Yash Thakur, an electrical engineering doctoral student at Penn State from Himachal Pradesh, India, has been awarded a $5,000 fellowship from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation Society (IEEE DEIS). He is one of only three recipients in the world to receive this honor for the 2015-16 academic year.

According to IEEE DEIS, the fellowships are awarded to further graduate education in the areas of electrical insulation and dielectric phenomena of interest to the society, and are open to students worldwide who are pursuing a doctorate degree.

“The development of efficient, high-performance materials for electrical energy storage is essential to meet the ever-increasing demands for electrical energy,” said Thakur. “Dielectric materials with high-energy density are desirable for a broad range of modern power electronic systems such as medical devices, hybrid electrical vehicles, filters, switched-mode power supplies and power weapon systems. Besides high energy storage capability, it is important that these materials show low conduction loss to avoid over heating. For example, in hybrid electric vehicles, an extra cooling loop has to be introduced in the capacitor banks in order to prevent a runaway temperature increase caused by the conduction loss heating.”

Thakur was awarded the fellowship for his proposal on the study of high field conduction loss in dielectric polymers. The fellowship will help him to research fundamental mechanisms causing these conduction losses and to provide potential solutions to mitigate it. One promising way is by adding nanocomposites in the polymer matrix.

“I am deeply honored by this recognition,” said Thakur. “This fellowship provides me an opportunity to pursue my research ideas on the topic that I am passionate about.”

Electrical engineering Professor Qiming Zhang is Thakur’s adviser. The fellowship will support Thakur’s research, which is funded by the Office of Naval Research.

Last Updated December 07, 2015