Dr Kumar has obtained his PhD from McMaster University, Canada and B.Tech (Hons) from IIT-Bombay in Materials Science & Metallurgy. He is the Head of the Materials Chemistry Research Group and a Senior Academic in University of Cambridge. He is Fellow of Trinity Hall College in Cambridge and a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Mining and Metallurgy (IOM3). He has published over 230 papers, 12 patents, 4 Chapters in Handbooks and 1 edited book (High energy density Li batteries, Wiley-VCH 2010, also translated in Chinese, 2013, 2nd Edition in 2017). He has supervised over 35 PhD students, 25 post-doctoral researchers, over 20 visiting students and hosted 12 visiting professors. He is the Editor-in-Chief of IOM3 journal, “Mineral Processing & Extractive Metallurgy” from 2004 and a Board Member of IOM3’s Technical Division. He has been conducting world leading research in materials chemistry reactions at the cutting edge of new applications within an ecological calculus. His research has helped advance new knowledge in materials chemistry with innovations in ionic sensors, batteries, fuel cells, electrolytic cells and photocatalytic-reactors.
Dr Kumar’s group has advanced a new metal–oxide photocatalyst composite material capable of absorbing both uv-visible light with reaction rates that are up to 2-orders of magnitude faster for disinfecting water and for destroying pollutants in air. A spin-out company (CamSES Ltd) has been set up to exploit the findings. A grant has been obtained to design a prototype for use in flood-hit regions and clean-water starved regions. This project received the DOW Sustainability Innovation Runners-up prize in 2012. Mike Coto, as a PhD student (now RA) visited Tanzania to carry out trials with local community water used for drinking in 2016 and 2017. Dr Kumar is currently involved in using this photocatalytic system for disinfection of water, degradation of air pollutants in enclosed space and in the atmosphere, remediation of oil spills, disinfection applications and harnessing chemical reactions.