Nitin P. Padture Otis Everett Randall University Professor of Engineering, Director of the Institute for Molecular and Nanoscale Innovation, Professor of Engineering

Nitin P. Padture is the Otis E. Randall University Professor in the School of Engineering at Brown University and Director of Brown's Institute for Molecular and Nanoscale Innovation  (IMNI). Prior to January 2012, he was College of Engineering Distinguished Professor at the Ohio State University (OSU, Columbus), and also the founding Director of the NSF-funded Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC) at OSU.  He received B.Tech. in Metallurgical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (1985), M.S. in Ceramic Engineering from Alfred University (1987), and Ph.D. in Materials Science & Engineering from Lehigh University (1991). Padture was a postdoctoral fellow at NIST (Gaithersburg, MD) for about 3 years, before joining the University of Connecticut (UConn, Storrs) faculty in January 1995 as Assistant Professor.  He became Associate Professor in 1998 and Professor in 2003.  Padture served as Interim Department Head at UConn for one year before moving to OSU in January 2005.

Padture's research and teaching interests are in advanced ceramics and nanomaterials, for applications ranging from jet engines to computer chips to solar cells.  His research has been funded by NSF, ONR, DoE, AFOSR, DARPA, ARO, Government of Spain, State of Ohio, private foundations, and industry. Padture has published over 190 publications, including four awarded patents, which have been cited over 13,400 times (Google Scholarh-index 61). Padture has delivered 200 invited/keynote/plenary talks in the US and abroad.

A Fellow of the American Ceramic Society, Padture has received that society's Roland B. Snow, Robert L. Coble, and Richard M. Fulrath awards.  He is also a recipient of the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award, and he is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.  Padture received the Distinguished Service Award and the Distinguished Alumnus Award from his alma mater, IIT-Bombay. He is Editor of international journals Acta Materialia and Scripta Materialia.

Contact:   Tel. (401)863-2859

Brown Affiliations

Research Areas

scholarly work

Please see CV.

research overview

Padture’s research interests are in the broad areas of synthesis/processing, characterization, and properties/performance of advanced ceramics and nanomaterials used in applications ranging from jet engines to solar cells to nanodevices. Specifically, he has active research in:


1. Tailoring of advanced structural ceramics, composites, and coatings:

            - Thermal barrier coatings and environmental barrier coatings

            - Nanocomposites of Ceramics and carbon nanotubes or graphene

            - Ultra-high temperature ceramic composites


2. Synthesis, characterization, device fabrication, and properties of functional nanomaterials, including graphene and perovskites:


- Novel solid-state solar cells

            - Graphene-based devices


This research has been funded by NSF, ONR, DoE, AFOSR, DARPA, ARO, Government of Spain, State of Ohio, private foundations, and industry. Padture has published over 190 publications, including four awarded patents, which have been cited over 13,400 times (Google Scholar;  h-index 61). Padture has delivered 200 invited/keynote/plenary talks in the US and abroad.


Current Research Group

Ph.D. Students

  • Ms. Laura R. Turcer
  • Mr. Min Chen
  • Mr. Srinivas Yadavalli
  • Mr. Qizhong Wang


Post-Doctoral Scholars

  • Dr. Lin Zhang
  • Dr. Hamidreza Khassaf
  • Dr. Cristina Ramirez
  • Dr. Yi Zhang


Undergraduate Researcher

  • Mr. Connor Watts
  • Mollie Koval


Faculty and Staff

  • Dr. Yuanyuan ‘Alvin’ Zhou, Assistant Professor (Research)
  • Dr. Hector F. Garces, Research Associate and Research Facility Manager


Visiting Students/Scientists

  • Ms. Yingxia Zong (Ph.D. student), 2016-18, from Qingdao University, China
  • Mr. Tanghao Liu (Ph.D. student), 2016-17, from Peking University, China
  • Prof. Dan Liu (Faculty member), 2017-18, from Tiajin Polytechnic University, China


Research Group Website (hopelessly outdated!)

research statement

Please see CV.

funded research

N.P. Padture (PI), X.C. Zeng (co-PI), and five other faculty participants; "Low-Cost, High-Efficiency Solar Cells for the Coming Clean Energy Revolution;" NSF; $4,000,000; 48 months.

N.P. Padture (PI), Y. Zhou (co-PI); “Grain-Boundary Engineering in Hybrid Organic-Inorganic Perovskites;" ONR; $450,000; 36 months.

N.P. Padture (PI); “Ceramics Science of Novel Solid-State Solar Cells;" NSF; $550,000; 48 months.

N.P. Padture (PI); “Studies of Hostile-Environment Degradation and its Mitigation in Ceramic Coatings for Gas-Turbine Engines;" ONR; $300,000; 36 months.

N.P. Padture (PI); “Research and Education in Ceramic Nanocomposites;" II-VI Foundation; $380,000; 48 months.

N.P. Padture (PI); "Durable, Multifunctional, Thermal Barrier Coatings for Marine Gas Turbines;" ONR-STTR (subcontract from ReliaCoat LLC); $350,000; 36 months.

B.W. Sheldon (PI) and N.P. Padture (co-PI); “Understanding and Controlling Toughening in Carbon Nanotube Reinforced Ceramics;" DoE-BES; $615,000; 48 months.