Nallathambi Kalaiseelvi became the first woman Director General of CSIR

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Senior electrochemical scientist Nallathamby Kalaiselvi has become the first woman director general of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

Important facts

  • She will succeed Shekhar Mande, who retired in April.

  • After Mande's retirement, Rajesh Gokhale, Secretary, the Department of Biotechnology, was given additional charge of CSIR.

  • Known for her work in the field of Li-ion batteries, Kalaiseelvi is the Director of CSIR-Central Electrochemical Research Institute in Karaikudi, Tamil Nadu.

  • She will also take over as the Secretary, Department of Scientific and Industrial Research.

  • Kalaiseelvi begins her job at CSIR and built a good reputation at the institute and became the first woman to head CSIR-CECRI in February 2019.

  • Kalaiselvi's research work for more than 25 years has focused primarily on the development of electrochemical power systems, especially electrodes.

  • She is currently working on the development of sodium-ion/lithium-sulphur batteries and supercapacitors.

  • Hailing from the town of Ambasamudram in Tirunelveli district in Tamil Nadu, Kalaiseelvi did her schooling in Tamil medium.

What are Lithium Ion Batteries?

  • It is also called as Li-ion battery is a type of rechargeable battery.

  • These are commonly used for portable electronics and electric vehicles and are growing in popularity for military and aerospace applications.

  • It is also used in handy consumer electronics goods such as mobile phones, laptops, cameras and many other portable consumer gadgets apart from industrial applications and aerospace.

  • China dominates the Li-ion battery market.

  • The majority of current domestic demand is met by imported batteries from China, South Korea and Taiwan.

Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)

  • It is the largest research and development organisation in India in the field of science and technology.

  • It has a dynamic network of 37 national laboratories, 39 outreach centres, 3 innovation complexes and 5 units.

  • It is ranked 37th out of 1587 government institutions around the world.

  • The Chairman (ex-officio) of CSIR is the Prime Minister and the Union Minister of Science and Technology is the Vice President (ex-officio).

  • It is funded by the Ministry of Science and Technology. 

  • Established - September 1942

  • Located - New Delhi

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