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May 4, 2020

Pattabiraman wins award for communicating thesis to the public

Written By: Jason Daley

The Wisconsin Initiative for Science Literacy (WISL) recently presented one of four Awards for Communicating Ph.D. Research to the Public to Dinesh Pattabiraman, recent PhD graduate in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

 Dinesh Pattabiraman
Dinesh Pattabiraman

The award stems from a colloquium presented by chemistry professor and director of the Wisconsin Initiative for Science Literacy Bassam Z. Shakhashiri. In 2010, he challenged chemistry PhD students to include a chapter in their theses communicating their research to non-scientists. That idea grew, and now WISL encourages all PhD students to include such chapters.

The purpose is to explain scholarly research and its significance to a wider audience including family, friends, civic groups, the media, legislators, and funding agencies. The goal is for participants to develop an appreciation for how their work fits into wider social contexts and help build the skills needed to convey their work to non-specialists throughout their careers.

Pattabiraman, working under Grainger Professor of Power Electronics and Electrical Machines Thomas Jahns and emeritus professor Robert Lasseter, included a chapter aimed at laypeople in his thesis, “Impact of inverter control on the dynamic performance of power systems with high penetration of inverter-based resources.” The chapter is currently available on Shakhashiri’s website Science Is Fun.

Pattabiraman defended his thesis earlier in 2020 and currently works as a Development and Modeling Engineer at TMEIC Corporation in Salem, Virginia.