Dr. SSV Ramakumar is Director (Research & Development) on the Board of Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. (IndianOil), a Fortune 500 company.
With a doctorate in Chemistry from IIT-Roorkee (erstwhile University of Roorkee), Dr. Ramakumar has more than three decades of uninterrupted R&D experience in downstream hydrocarbon sector, notably in the areas of lubricant technology, refinery process research streams, including catalyst development. He is instrumental in developing India's home-grown, OEM-approved marine lubricant technology, which catapulted IndianOil's SERVO lubes into the select league of five MNC oil companies. He spearheaded the complete indigenization of IndianOil’s flagship resid up-gradation technology- INDMAX by way of developing in-house catalyst for the process. Under his able guidance, IndianOil has developed bouquet of technologies for producing BS VI quality fuels in the refineries. He spearheaded the fastest ever development and commercial deployment of Indane Nanocut high-therm metal-cutting gas. On-purpose technologies like Octamax for octane enhancement of MS pool, differentiated LPG for domestic applications. He is leading a team of scientist to develop cutting edge solutions in energy storage (batteries), hydrogen & fuel cells and solar energy. Dr. Ramakumar is currently steering the setting up of Centre of Excellences in Alternative Energy, nanotechnology and Synthetic Biotechnology & Corrosion Research at the 2nd R&D campus of Indian Oil.
Dr. Ramakumar has to his credit over 150 research publications in peer reviewed national / international journals and 133 national & international patents (filed & granted) besides winning several prestigious awards for presenting the best research papers in international conferences. Apart from serving on IndianOil Board, Dr. Ramakumar is also a Board member of Lanzatech, USA, Board member of Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) & is also on the Board of Oil Industry Development Board (OIDB) besides presiding the activities of industry bodies like Society for Petroleum Laboratories and India Energy Forum. He is also currently a member of Executive Council of PCRA, member of National APEX Council of Prime Minister Research Fellowship Scheme for doctoral programme, member of Nano Applications and Technology Advisory Group (NATAG), convener of Methanol utilization task force constituted by NITI Aayog, Adjunct Professor at Institute of Chemical Energy, Mumbai & Bhubaneswar Campuses and Senate Member of IIT-Delhi. Dr. Ramakumar also heads the DBT – IOC Bio-Energy Research Centre and is on the Governing Council of International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Bio-technology (ICGEB), Governing Council member for Centre of Excellence in Advanced Biofuels and Biocommodities and Governing Council member of Centre of Excellence in Oil, Gas & Energy, IIT Mumbai. Several national scientific societies like International Council of Internal Combustion Engines –India Chapter (CIMAC INDIA), Indian Society of Fuels and Lubricants (ISFL), Tribology Society of India (TSI) are currently being presided over by Dr.Ramakumar.
In his long career, Dr.Ramakumar received many prestigious awards like NPMP, FIPI, NRDC, AIIMA Innovation, Bangalore Nano and World Petroleum Congress (WPC) excellence award for various technologies he developed at IndianOil.
India currently imports ~83% of its crude oil requirement. Biofuels, an eco-friendly alternative, could help reduce dependence on crude oil-derived fuel. India has large quantities of solid and liquid wastes, which are expected to increase as urbanization accelerates. Converting waste into energy can have the dual benefit of reducing dependence on imported energy and reducing environmental stress. How can policy measures such as the Ethanol Blending Programme (EBP) and Bio-diesel from Used Cooking Oil (UCO) help promote biofuels? What technological innovations are needed to significantly scale up biofuel production in India? What incentives are needed to attract private investment in the entire value chain?
Global oil demand, driven by China and India, has grown strongly in recent years. Global economic slowdown and trade disputes, however, are creating uncertainty about future growth prospects for the refining industry. There is concern that increasingly stringent policies aimed at decarbonization and local air quality will affect the downstream oil business. Further technological advancements and disruptions in mobility are creating concerns that a peak in oil demand may lead to stranded assets. What strategies should refineries adopt to manage uncertain business environment? What is the future viability of integrated facilities? What are the opportunities and risks in India for investment in integrated facilities?