Interview: Dr. Bankim Chandra Ray

We spoke to Dr. Bankim Chandra Ray, professor and department head of Metallurgical & Materials Engineering at the National Institute of Technology in Rourkela, India.  His work focuses on the impact of extreme environmental conditions in FRP composites. He has 23 years of teaching and research experience. He has held editorial board positions, done consultancy work and acted as a mentor for young PH.D students.

In our interview, we focused on about the importance of taking part in overseas programs, how to be a young researcher in the field, and what to do as a student pursuing the Ph.D track.

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WriteForWiley: Talk about the patent process. What were some of the struggles?  What did you learn from this experience? What advice would you have for others hoping to patent their research?

Dr. Ray: [The patent process] is simply hard and smart work based on extensive and comprehensive literature survey on the subject area and the courage to think and do differently. That yields patents.

The experience is that don’t repeat any investigation. Just honestly explore the investigation in your own right and capabilities. Trust me. The research group is never in a hurry to get attention from the world. We are enjoying doing our job and always feeling fortunate for the golden chance of doing research in the struggling country of [India]. Be happy and make other happy by your own work without any intention of mesmerizing the people around you.  It is easier to be innovative than to repeat and get unnoticed.

You took part in a lot of overseas programs. Which one was the most meaningful to you?  Would you advise others to attend these types of programs? 

Yes, I have learnt a lot from overseas experience. I always encourage my students and scholars to reach out to experts and different countries. Each one of my exposures to each country is extremely valuable. Right at this moment, one [former] scholar has gone to a university in USA, another one to Canada, and one more to UK. I am always keen to get criticized by personal interactions.

Why did you initially become interested in holding editorial board positions?  What advice do you have for young authors?

[Holding editorial board positions] is a noble responsibility. Most of the time, it is really very difficult to manage. But I have never denied any responsibility.

Young authors should be thorough about the past and current literature on the research areas. Please go for a smart investigation. You should be modest about your claim of investigation. At the same time, you must be confident in handling the failures of experiments. But go for reporting your findings and [don’t be scared to] get criticized.

What are some of the struggles of your position as a reviewer?  What is the most rewarding part of this position?

Most of the time, the manuscripts are common reporting and very decorative investigations. There is an indication of struggles of convincing others by using unnecessary characterization tools. I trust the authors are not enjoying that much.

Please go for small and less explanations in your own words and thoughts. Just report it.

The responsibility [of being a reviewer] is rewarding in many dimensions. I am becoming more confident about my work and more comfortable in guiding others.

As a PH.D supervisor, what advice do you have for those students moving towards this track? What has been the most rewarding part of this experience? 

[My advice is] hard work and comprehensive literature survey along with continuous interactions with the scholars and supervisors. The scholars of mine are achieving a lot in different dimensions. They are happy fraternity of my endeavors and I am happy at the end of the day. Either they are in R & D section of very big organization or else getting competitive overseas scholarships and going abroad for post doctoral studies.

As a student, did you have any mentors helping you along the way? Did they give you advice? What was the most memorable piece of advice you were given as a student? What advice do you have for students?

[As a student], I was not so fortunate. But I have still deep regards of my teachers in different levels of my degrees obtained. They were very busy people.

I learnt every part of experience form my own mistakes. I have cured my wounds of failure through small successes. Be grateful and thankful to all around you. Always feel fortunate for the given chance and opportunity.

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36 responses to “Interview: Dr. Bankim Chandra Ray”

  1. Ajeet Kumar Srivastav says :

    My Inspiration ! I am fortunate to start walking in science holding his hands only !

    • Khushbu says :

      He is my confidence..the first teacher in my life to motivate my passion….I think the best description of a professor is when his students call him a teacher….he reaches hearts of his students….this interview is just the tip of the iceberg…

    • haripriya ramesh says :

      I feel sir has talked that we should enjoy whateve we do and also added that can be the ploy to go places in life .Never mind if you have mentors or not sir, experience is always the bestest teacher and the lessons taught by it are evergreen !! Highly motivating for the beginners in research…

  2. Rajesh Kumar Prusty says :

    Knowledge accompanied by confidence and experience is the key to success- he has proven this to be true continuously throughout his life. Teaching and most importantly convincing people by live and daily happening examples is one of his key specialities. Motivating and rewarding students is his another passion. people with his support and supervision are definitely very lucky.

  3. Aniruddha Chatterjee says :

    He is a real role-model in all attributes. My project guide & I have always admired his modesty even after being in such a prestigious position. A real kind-hearted person.

  4. Anil Kumar Singh Bankoti says :

    He will be always an inspiration for me and all his students. He is very hardworking, helpful and dedicated to his work. He always motivate the students for good and quality research and helping them to achieve new heights in their career.

  5. Dinesh Kumar Rathore says :

    The best person, always motivated and smiling in nature. I am really fortunate for being his student.

  6. Dinesh Rathore says :

    The best person, always motivated and smiling in nature. I am really fortunate for being his student.

  7. Dr. Debasis Chaira says :

    Excellent topic. Prof. Ray has explained very basic ethics of research. Readers will be benefitted.

  8. Sumanta says :

    It is a great honor to be associated with Dr. B C Ray as my supervisor for PhD research here at NIT Rourkela. His research theme and practice i like the most. Through my research i will make him proud for sure…..

  9. Sujata Panda says :

    Great professor. Dr. Ray is very friendly and has a great source of superior knowledge.
    On concerning as an instructor, he is a motivator to his student. “Dr. Ray appeared well-knowledgeable of the content. He’s great; I admired his knowledge of the material. “I loved coming to his class everyday because I knew I was going to learn from a professor that appears to love what he is teaching and who knows what he is talking about. The each class is concise, informative and motivating . I learned something new each day of class He’s a great professor.”
    The comment share by Dr Ray professor is “Library is the only source which make the difference between clever and a foolish” is the great motivated sentence for his student and scholar.

    As a researcher he is a good guide who motivate his scholar for a new type of research (out of box thinking ). He treats each of his scholars not as a scholar but as a son/ daughter which make a really friendly atmosphere. We are fortunate to have our guide as a Dr Ray who take cares of his students at every moment of his life. The greatest comment shared by Dr Ray to his scholar is treat “ Every failure as a one step ahead of learning” which provides a mental support full with enthusiasm and creativity.
    He is a great professor, motivator , researcher, who enjoys his job and working with his students and we ( as a student) feel proud to have Dr Ray as our professor.

  10. Harshpreet Singh says :

    Its an honor to have such a teacher in our department, always motivated the students and an inspiration to young research fellows!!!
    Great to have u sir!!!……

  11. Biswaranjan Dash says :

    Great interaction. I really liked the reply to the query no 4. I too realize that characterization tools should serve the purpose it is being employed for. Prof B.C Ray is an epitome of excellence in the field of research. He once pointed out to me that nothing is more virtuous than being simple. As my B.Tech thesis supervisor, back in 2009, I learnt a lot from Prof Ray. A figure of inspiration that he is, he motivates people around him. It is because of Prof Ray, I had developed keen interest in research and an urge to take this as a career opportunity.

  12. Surendra says :

    I remember the first day of meeting with him when i was in 3rd semester of my B.Tech. The way he motivated me in the research field till now I have the same enthusiasm that he developed in me while doing experiments. I am fortunate that I got chance to work under him during my B.Tech learning days. Now and in future I cant forget the teachings, both philosophically and technically, of him. After reading the above interview I felt very proud of being one of his students.
    Good luck sir……

  13. nirajchawake says :

    Here Prof B C Ray has given wonderful recipe for research…really motivating short and sweet interview.

  14. Hrishikesh Shastri says :

    Truly motivating words for the people in the research field. We are lucky to be around him. Though I haven’t got a chance to personally interact with him but I would really like to!

  15. ASISH K ROY says :

    I personally know Dr. Ray since 1982……we were batch-mate during engineering study in Jadavpur University. Mentioned below are few words about Dr. Ray which I feel very happy to share as my life-experience…….

    a) As a friend : highly faithful and accommodating without self-interest
    b) As a student : highly curious and knowledge-hunter
    c) As a person : helping nature and never hurts others
    d) As a teacher : produces high-quality intellectual knowledge-assets
    e) As a scientist : goes to the bottom of sea…..doesn’t leave half-way…..very very successful……many of us know

    I feel myself very much lucky and proud to be associated with a personality named Dr. Bankim Chandra Ray……..and look forward to see many more achievements from Dr. Ray……..

  16. dev vishnu says :

    Inspite of having a vast knowledge in the field of material science , he is a most humble person i have ever seen , with lots of enthusiasm and ability to influence people around him . the best thing u notice about him is his never fading smile 🙂

  17. Angie says :

    A very enterprising and encouraging person, Dr. Ray has been like a beacon of inspiration for me since I met him. He has, indeed, taught me the value of hardwork, innovation and humility, all in action at the same time. It is a very fortunate piece of fate to be in the presence of such a dynamic personality and highly motivating as his student.

  18. Deepak Nayak says :

    “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” Dr. B C Ray is an example of such a man. He has great personality and motivates students a lot. I am very lucky to be one of those students. Gud luck Sir>>…

  19. Nigamananda Ray says :

    I think prof B.C.Ray is the first teacher who was motivated me to relate theory with practical example in my engg. life…… Instead of just learning about the major phenomenon in metallurgy and material science, i analysed them.His methodology of doing research inspired me to pursue higher study instead of joining industry.

  20. Shashwati Banerjee says :

    Very much encouraging for PhD scholars. Very much helpful to learn about Research ethics and to dedicate ownself to a research for the community, country and the world around.

  21. gloriya panda says :

    Prof B.C Ray projects himself more as a friend than a professor.. His knowledge , his way of comprehending problems and landing with appropriate solutions is simply unfathomable…it really feels great that i got a chance to learn from him during my B.tech days..

  22. Managobinda says :

    Dear Sir,

    I feel my wife Sanghamitra as very lucky to have you as her guide, inspiration & well wisher.
    I salute you for all your achievements.
    Best wishes for future.

    Regards,
    Managobinda Sethi

  23. Ananta Prasad Chakravarty says :

    We, the Ph.D scholar are so fortunate for being the student of Dr. Ray. My vocabulary is simply not adequate to express my heartfelt gratitude to Dr. B. C. Ray. Dr. Ray is not only an erudite professor but also an icon of inspiration and powerful beam of encouragement. We are feeling really happy for this success. Hope, Dr. Ray will become the best icon of researcher for the implementation of FRP composites in various challenged environments. With Lots of love and affection…Ananta…

  24. Pallabi Patnaik says :

    “I once heard a saying that when you’re ready, the teacher you need appears before you.” And that turned out to be absolutely true. “The great teachers fill you up with hope and shower you with a thousand reasons to embrace all aspects of life” And Dr. B.C.Ray is not just a teacher. He is a professor, who professes and shares his experiences. “Professors inspire you, they entertain you, and you end up learning a ton even when you don’t know it.” Thank You for being there Sir!

  25. Annapurna Patra says :

    Sir,
    You r my role model.YOu are the source of inspiration to me

  26. pravash4 says :

    Dear Sir,

    You have been and always will be an inspiration to others. The way you tackle things has always motivated me to find an ideal in you. My all sincere wishes to add more feathers in your urn Sir.

    Love and Regards
    Pravash

    • rameshiitk says :

      First of all I am very much happy and fortunate that a person like him is my Ph.D supervisor. I like and appreciate his simplicity and honesty in personal as well as professional career. He has outstanding knowledge on FRP composite and I believe he is the best researcher in his area. I pray God to bless him for better health and more achievements in his life .

      I am grateful to you sir.

      Sincerely,

      R.K.Nayak

  27. HAREKRUSHNA SUTAR says :

    I am feeling very proud ,that , He is our HOD. He is not only a great researcher on the same hand , a great person. I have a high respect and affection for Dr ray sir.I wish sir a better health and more academic achievements in life.

  28. Pratik Ray says :

    Excellent interview by Prof B.C. Ray. He was one of my favorite professors at NIT Rourkela, and my mentor for the final year research project. A final year research project that turned out to be different from most; it was among my earliest experiences and one to cherish. We ended up with numerous publications in journals en route to being awarded the first ever gold medal for best undergraduate research under the stewardship of Prof Ray. Almost 10 years down the line, as a current researcher in materials science, I can still trace a big chunk of my academic foundation to this phase and I have Prof B.C. Ray to thank for this.

    Over the years, I have seen his research lab and group develop in leaps and bounds – and have had the pleasure of hearing scholars from various universities pay glowing tributes to the department with a special mention of Prof Ray, who heads the department now. I also had the pleasure of going through his excellent book chapter “Mechanical Behavior of Polymer Composites at Cryogenic Temperatures”, in the book “Polymers at Cryogenic Temperatures”, published by Springer-Verlag.

    His achievements as a professor and a researcher has been phenomenal and I wish him all the success in future. With scientific research growing at an exponential rate in India, we need more Bankim Chandra Rays to mentor students in research and provide a steady hand at the helm of materials departments and institutes.

    Pratik

  29. Renu says :

    I got the opportunity to work with Dr.Ray during my project in M.Tech. 2nd year. He always encourage his students and made time to review their experimental objectives and conclusions and give excellent guidance, despite his busy schedule. I truly admire him for his depth of knowledge not only in FRP Composites, in every field and his leadership qualities. Thank you so much!!

  30. wileyauthor2 says :

    Thank you everyone for your great comments!

  31. Dr Tushar Sen says :

    I know Prof Ray very closely since the year of 1991. His present interview outcome is excellent and will have strong impact on teaching and research community. He is very much innovative, creative towards research and teaching. His teaching approaches always influence, motivate and inspire students to learn. He is a very popular teacher and best teacher in NIT Rourkela. He always respect and support for the development of students as individuals. Prof Ray always used to motivate many undergraduate research students into higher degree by research (M.Phil., Ph.D., Post-doc) students under his supervision that Inspiration leads to aspiration. Prof Ray is famous for his unique personality among community as well. He is very much helpful to his community/society. He is known as “Trouble shooter” of each difficult situation.

  32. Tamay Bera says :

    Prof Ray has been an excellent teacher and great researcher. He was also my mentor in my final year BTech thesis which was a life changing experience for all of us. His mentorship has earned us the best undergraduate dissertation, our first publications, conference proceedings and most importantly the inspiration for research. His classes had been very informative and his conversations has been extremely inspiring. He has always been at the forefront research at NIT Rourkela. His hard work and shear passion for academics had certainly helped not just the department, but also the institute in whole to excel in research and academia. I am very glad to be one his students and I hope he continues to inspire young minds.

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