The year 2011 is the International Year of Chemistry, and when Thomson Reuters released data identifying the world’s top 100 chemists over the past 10 years, the name of the CSIR’s Professor Suprakas Sinha-Ray featured at number 50.New Image

Suprakas is the head of the DST/CSIR National Centre for Nano-Structured Materials (NCNSM). The chemists on the list were ranked according to the impact of their published research. With a rating of 68.22, Suprakas was ranked at number 50 and was the only representative from the African continent.

When asked about this achievement, Suprakas commented that he became quite emotional upon hearing about it for the first time. “I have received hundreds of emails from around the world. Really, this is a great experience.”

50th out of a million

Since approximately one million chemists were recorded in the journal publications indexed by Thomson Reuters during the last decade, these 100 represent the top 100th of 1 %.

The national affiliations of the authors are: 70 for the United States, seven from Germany, four from the United Kingdom, two each from Canada, France, Denmark, Switzerland and South Korea, and one each from Australia, Belgium, Sweden, Italy, Israel, South Africa, Brazil, Japan and Singapore.

Quite a number of former Nobel laureates also feature on the list, which places Suprakas in exceptional company. At age 37, he also seems to be the youngest chemist on the top 100 list. “I can’t say for sure, but it looks like I am the only one below 40-years of age,” he says.

The top 100 list is intended to celebrate the achievements of chemists who achieved the highest citation impact scores for chemistry papers (articles and reviews) published since January 2000.

A proud moment

Suprakas comments: “This is a very proud moment for all of us and I believe also for the CSIR and South Africa. The selection criteria are very stringent; it seems they had considered most of my current work due to my affiliation with the CSIR.”

Suprakas holds a PhD in physical chemistry (polymer science and engineering) from the University of Calcutta, India, where he graduated with the highest honour and was awarded the Sir PC Ray research award.

He was recently honoured by the American Ceramic Society with its Global Star Award 2011. This award is given annually by its Engineering Ceramics division to a young researcher who had made a significant contribution to the success of the International Conference on Advanced Ceramics and Composites.

See the full top 100 list by clicking here.