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Indian-origin RMIT professor honoured


MELBOURNE, 4 MARCH. RMIT University’s Professor Madhu Bhaskaran has been recognised by the Australian Academy of Science for her outstanding contribution to science, with a prestigious honorific award. Bhaskaran was awarded the Frederick White Medal for early career researchers and is one 18 current and future science superstars to receive a 2020 honorific award.

As co-leader of the Functional Materials and Microsystems group at RMIT in Melbourne, Australia, her research works to transform how we imagine, use and interact with electronic devices. Bhaskaran’s signature advance is in the field of stretchable electronics where she has developed techniques to stretch devices to an unprecedented level – allowing them to be worn on the skin. Her research is a precursor to numerous practical devices, which can adapt seamlessly to the human body and deliver significant environmental benefit (portable hazardous gas detection) and community benefit (UV sensors or health management).

Bhaskaran’s team is currently working with industry partner Sleeptite to bring these sensors out of the laboratory into everyday life, integrating them into bedding products for aged care to non-invasively track the health and wellbeing of residents at night. Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research and Innovation and Vice-President, Professor Calum Drummond, congratulated Professor Madhu Bhaskaran on her achievement.

Bhaskaran, who completed her Bachelor of Engineering at P.S.G. College of Technology, Coimbatore, said she was honoured to be among such a diverse group of honorific award recipients, demonstrating excellence in research.

President of the Australian Academy of Science, Professor John Shine, congratulated all the award winners for their inspiring research. The Australian Academy of Science award is the latest honour for Bhaskaran, who is also Node Director and Chief Investigator in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Transformative Meta-Optical Systems (TMOS) and on the Board of Directorsof Women in STEMM Australia.

She has previously been awarded the APEC Science Prize for Innovation, Research and Education, the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering’s Batterham Medal and the Australian Museum Macquarie University Eureka Prize for Outstanding Early Career Researcher.



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