Jibo Sanyal

Scientist Jibo Sanyal has been named one of the Knoxville (Tenn.) Business Journal’s “40 Under 40” honorees. (LinkedIn photo)

An Indian American scientist, Jibo Sanyal, was among the honorees named to the Tennessee-based Knoxville Business Journal's “40 Under 40” list.

The publication profiled Sanyal in a Jan. 3 article and said he managed web-tool EAGLE-I for emergency response teams as hurricanes Harvey and Irma ravaged Texas and Florida in the fall of 2017.

“It tracks what the current state of electrical outages looks like for the country at the county level and updates in real time,” Sanyal said of EAGLE-I in the report.

Local federal agencies, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency, use the data provided by the situational awareness tool to identify energy infrastructure impacted by events like hurricanes and coordinate response, recovery and restoration efforts, the report said.

Sanyal is an ORNL staff scientist and team leader for Scalable and High Performance Geocomputation at the lab, serves as project manager for EAGLE-I, as well as other projects that leverage ORNL’s supercomputing capabilities to solve problems related to the lab’s clean energy mission, according to the publication.

He also works with the Energy-Water Nexus Knowledge Discovery Framework, which helps stakeholders understand the interdependence of water and energy systems, as well as the Urban Exascale Computing Project, a collaboration with other national labs that uses supercomputers to simulate dynamics in urban environments, the report said.

“This project is expected to catapult the current one-off capabilities into a holistic tool that allows stakeholders to rapidly modernize how urban choices are made with regards to long-term planning, as well as shorter-term dynamic urban scenarios,” Sanyal said in the report.

Additionally, the honoree leads a project that uses supercomputing to analyze satellite imagery to detect human settlements.

The Global Accelerated Settlement Discovery research, he said, can inform humanitarian efforts, such as the Gates Foundation’s disease eradication efforts, the publication added.

Since becoming a team leader in 2016, Sanyal has also participated in the STEM Stories lecture series designed to inspire youth to pursue STEM-related fields, the journal noted.

“There are very few places where there’s a very tangible and direct connection for the work you do and its impact on our livelihoods, wellbeing and our environment,” he said. “At ORNL, with the projects we do, that connection is so direct. Seeing how our work affects people’s lives is a great motivator.”

Sanyal studied computer science and engineering in his native India at St. Edmund’s College, North-Eastern Hill University, and the University College of Science and Technology at the University of Calcutta before moving to pursue a master’s degree and doctorate in those disciplines at Mississippi State University.

He joined ORNL in 2011, helping to develop scalable building energy use simulations and founding the Oak Ridge Postdoctoral Association to support tomorrow’s scientists in their professional development, according to his bio.

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