The Energy Frontier Award has been awarded to Prof. CNR Rao for his research in the field of renewable energy sources and energy storage.
In yet another recognition for the Indian scientific community, Bharat Ratna, Professor CNR Rao has been conferred with the “Eni Award 2020”. It is considered to be the Nobel Prize in energy research. Out of the three major awards, the Energy Frontier Award has been awarded to Prof. Rao for his research in the field of renewable energy sources and energy storage.
The Eni Awards 2020 will be presented in an official ceremony at the Quirinal Palace in Rome on 14 October 2021. Sergio Mattarella, president of the Italian Republic, will preside over the ceremony.
The Energy Frontiers Award has been conferred for Prof. Rao’s work on metal oxides, carbon nanotubes, and other materials and two-dimensional systems, including graphene, boron-nitrogen-carbon hybrid materials, and molybdenum sulfide (Molybdenite – MoS2) for energy applications and green hydrogen production.
The Eni Award is awarded by the Italian oil and gas company, Eni. Launched in 2007, the award has become internationally recognized over the years in the field of energy and environmental research. It aims to promote better use of energy sources and encourage new generations of researchers in their work. It bears witness to the importance that the company places on scientific research and innovation. It includes a cash prize and a specially minted gold medal.
Professor Rao has been working on hydrogen energy as the only source of energy for the benefit of the entire humankind. His work included hydrogen storage, photochemical, electrochemical and solar production of hydrogen, and non-metallic catalysis. He has developed some highly innovative materials by working in photodissociation of water, thermal dissociation, and electrolysis activated by electricity produced from solar or wind energy. The same or related materials have also been shown to have beneficial properties for the construction of hydrogen storage systems and supercapacitors with high specific power and an increased number of charge-discharge cycles. The latter are energy storage devices, similar to batteries, which will become an increasingly important part of the renewable energy sector.