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Prof. CNR Rao

Chintamani Nagesa Ramachandra Rao, also known as C.N.R. Rao (Kannada: ಚಿಂತಾಮಣಿ ನಾಗೇಶ ರಾಮಚಂದ್ರ ರಾಯ (Ciṃtāmaṇi Nāgēśa Rāmacaṃdra Rāva)) (born 30 June 1934, Bangalore, India) is an Indian chemist who has worked mainly in solid-state and structural chemistry.



Rao obtained his bachelors degree from Mysore University in 1951, obtaining a masters from Banaras Hindu University two years later, and obtained his PhD in 1958 from Purdue University. He served as a faculty member in the department of Chemistry at the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur from 1963 to 1976 and as the director of the Indian Institute of Science from 1984 to 1994. He has also been a visiting professor at Purdue, the University of Oxford, the University of Cambridge and University of California, Santa Barbara. He is the founding President of the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research.


Rao is currently the National Research Professor and Linus Pauling Research Professor and Honorary President of the Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research in Bangalore, India [1] . He was appointed Chair of the Scientific Advisory Council to the Indian Prime Minister in January 2005, a position which he had occupied earlier during 1985-89. He is also the director of the International Centre for Materials Science (ICMS).

Rao is one of the world's foremost solid state and materials chemists. He has contributed to the development of the field over five decades. His work on transition metal oxides has led to basic understanding of novel phenomena and the relationship between materials properties and the structural chemistry of these materials.

Rao serves on the board of the Science Initiative Group.


He was awarded the Hughes Medal by the Royal Society in 2000, and he became the first recipient of the India Science Award, instituted by the Government of India, for his contributions to solid state chemistry and materials science, awarded in 2004.

He has won several international prizes and is a member of many of the world's scientific associations, including the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the Royal Society (London; FRS, 1982), French Academy, Japanese Academy and the Pontifical Academy.

He was awarded Dan David Prize in 2005, by the Dan David Foundation, Tel Aviv University, which he shared with George Whitesides and Robert Langer. In 2005, he was conferred the title Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur (Knight of the Legion of Honour) by France, awarded by the French Government. He had also been given the honours Padma Shri and Padma Vibhushan by the Indian Government and Karnataka Ratna by the Karnataka state government. He is a foreign fellow of Bangladesh Academy of Sciences. He was also awarded an honorary Doctor of Science by the University of Calcutta in 2004.


Rao was one of the earliest to synthesize two-dimensional oxide materials such as La2CuO4. His work has led to a systematic study of compositionally controlled metal-insulator transitions. Such studies have had a profound impact in application fields such as colossal magneto resistance and high temperature superconductivity. Oxide semiconductors have unusual promise. He has made immense contributions to nanomaterials over the last two decades, besides his work on hybrid materials. He is the author of around 1500 research papers. He has authored and edited 42 books.

Currently Prof CNR Rao is working on the advanced materials and nanomaterials including fullerenes, carbon nanotubes, metaloxide tubes and wires.[2]

  1. Prof. CNR Rao, JNCASR
  2. B.C. Satishkumar, P.J. Thomas, A. Govindaraj and C.N.R. Rao, Y-junction carbon nanotubes, Appl Phys Lett 77 (16) (2000), pp. 2530–2532.

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