“Nowadays buildings are getting taller. As a consequence, the amount of heat going in becomes larger. Saint-Gobain Research India (SGRI) works on construction materials most suited to hot and humid climates,” said Yashwant Narendar, Director, SGRI.
Like his predecessor, Anand Tanikella, Narendar has also worked with Saint Gobain’s Research Centre at Northboro, Boston, before moving to Chennai. He brings with him two decades of diverse experience in R&D, manufacturing, business development, and marketing. He has had hands-on products to ‘market’ skill set, R&D incubation to manufacturing and pilot plants and then preparing the technology and process for commercial production.
After graduation from IIT-B in Metallurgical Engineering, Narendar took his doctorate from Penn State University, USA and MBA in Management & Finance from Clark University, Massachusetts.
Narendar has gained varied research experience in industrial ceramics, semiconductor components, solid oxide fuel cells, advanced ceramics, conductive ceramics... Over the last couple of years, he was in charge as Vice President (Technology) at the roofing products group that manufactures residential and commercial roofing systems including photovoltaic products. He pointed to his work on pyro electrics and ferro electrics that had broad applications in detecting defects in concrete bridges.
Over 22 patents
“At Saint-Gobain Research, Boston, we have been working on construction materials block: gypsum, sealing, roofing and exteriors,” he said. He pointed to not much focus in India on materials for surfaces. “In the US there is extensive use of plastics-based exterior sealing materials in the exterior of the house, instead of concrete. Such material is used to enhance the aesthetics, looks and energy-efficiency,” remarked Narendar. His varied background on industrial minerals, semiconductors, and ceramics, with focus on research, has resulted in winning over 22 patents and publishing several research papers in reputed journals.
YN says the work in Boston was characterised by its focus on result-orientation. He expressed happiness over working closely with academics and research students at IIT-M along with a strong team of in-house scientists, engineers, and other specialists. He said his focus would be to quicken the maturity phase of research findings.