IIT Bombay alumnus, Dr. Sujay V. Kumar (B.Tech., Civil Engineering, 1996) and a NASA Goddard research scientist won the prestigious 2022 Arthur S. Flemming Award. This esteemed recognition is a testament to Dr. Kumar’s research contributions and his position as a trailblazer in his field. The NASA Goddard organization took cognisance of Dr. Kumar’s profound impact on advancing scientific knowledge and remarked, “The award is presented annually to outstanding federal employees in science, technology, engineering, administration, leadership, and law. Dr. Kumar researches Earth remote sensing measurement and modeling within Goddard’s Hydrological Sciences Lab.”
Dr. Kumar’s Academic Background
After graduating with his B. Tech. degree from IIT Bombay, Dr. Kumar received his M.S. in Civil Engineering from North Carolina State University in 1998. He then got his Ph. D. in Computer Aided Engineering from North Carolina State University in 2002. His dissertation topic was, “Vitri- A Generic Framework for Engineering Decision Support Systems on Heterogeneous Computer Networks.”
His research interests include Surface Hydrology, Land Surface Modelling, Data Assimilation, Remote Sensing, High-Performance Computing, Biosphere-Atmosphere Interactions, Climate Variability & Climate Changes; Earth System Modelling, Parallel/Distributed Computing, Mathematical Modelling, Decision Support Systems, and Heuristic Optimization Techniques.
Tracing Dr. Kumar’s Career Trajectory
Dr. Kumar has been with the NASA Goddard Space Flight Centre since 2002.
Dr. Kumar spent his initial years (2002-2008) after his Doctorate working as an Assistant Research Scientist for the Goddard Earth Science Technology Centre, Greenbelt, MD. He was the technical lead for the development of the NASA Land Information System (LIS) for fine-scale land surface modelling and data assimilation. He also successfully led the transition of LIS to operations at the Air Force Weather Agency, NOAA/NCEP, and NOHRSC. He then served as the technical lead for NASA Earth Science Technology Office (ESTO) funded projects to develop coupled land-atmosphere modelling system involving LIS and the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model, using interoperable technologies such as the Earth System Modelling Framework (ESMF).
He then became the Senior Scientist (2008-2015) at the Science Applications International Corporation, Greenbelt, MD, where he served as the technical lead for transitioning the award-winning Land Information System (LIS; http://lis.gsfc.nasa.gov) for research and applications with partners at the Air Force Weather Agency, NOAA/NCEP, USACE, USDA, NRL, NWS/OHD, NOHRSC, and USGS/FEWSNET.
In 2015, he moved to the NASA Goddard Space Flight Centre, Greenbelt, MD, as a Research Physical Scientist. He researches on Earth science remote sensing measurement and modelling to understand their impact on land-atmosphere interactions and relationships with human activities through the analysis of data from space, in-situ and airborne instruments. He continues to serve as the technical lead for transitioning the award-winning Land Information System (LIS; http://lis.gsfc.nasa.gov) for research and applications with partners at the Air Force Weather Agency, NOAA/NCEP, USACE, USDA, NRL, NWS/OHD, NCAR, NOHRSC, and USGS/FEWSNET. The targeted use of LIS spans socially relevant applications such as water resources and agricultural management, drought, and flood monitoring, famine early warning and prediction, and weather and climate prediction.
Scientific Achievements and Recognition
Over the years Dr. Kumar has become a member of several prestigious organizations including the American Geophysical Union and the American Meteorological Society. He has received many awards, published over 120 academic papers in prestigious journals, chaired several scientific committees, and is the editor/associate editor of several journals.
For more on Dr. Kumar’s Journey, click the link below:
IIT Bombay is delighted at the incredible honour that has been bestowed upon one of its very own. The Institute extends its heartfelt congratulations to Dr. Kumar for winning the prestigious 2022 Arthur S. Flemming Award. His exceptional journey serves as a shining example to our current and future students. As Dr. Kumar continues to push boundaries and contribute to the advancement of scientific research, we wish him continued success in all his endeavours, and we are confident that he will continue to make his alma mater extremely proud.