Scientist G & Programme Director
Ocean Observation Systems
National Institute of Ocean Technology - Chennai
Ministry of Earth Sciences

MTS India section; Institution of Engineers(India), Kanchipuram;


Dr. R. Venkatesan has 35 years of experience in field of ocean technology and is currently working as a Scientist G & Program Director - Ocean Observation Systems, National Institute of Ocean Technology Chennai. Recently he is recognized by two UN organizations World Meteorological Organisation and UNESCO IOC for his outstanding services in global ocean data collection. He also received prestigious MTS Lockheed Martin Award and as a chair of MTS India section he received outstanding Section award.

He earned his M. Tech Degree from Karnataka Regional Engineering College and Ph.D. degree from IISC, Bangalore and continued his academic pursuit to complete courses in Marine Environmental Pollution and Management and International Business Management from IIFT New Delhi. He is an adjunct professor in IIT Kharagpur IIT Bhubaneswar and IIT Madras He led team to Arctic to successfully install India's first ever Arctic Moored observatory and received National Geoscience Award from Hon ble President of India. He is responsible for planning and coordination and implementation of ocean observation systems activities of NIOT. He has successfully established tsunami buoy network for tsunami early warning in Indian waters.

He was elected to a prestigious position in Steering Committee Member for GOOS of UNESCO IOC Paris nominated by Government of India and also two more international committees of DOOS & OceanSITES. He is a member of Joint task Force of SMART cables by UN organisation ITU Geneva WMO and UNESCO IOC

He worked as regional coordinator for South Asia and was posted in Colombo under United Nations Environment Programme UNEP. He led delegation to attend meetings in United Nations New York, and other UN Organizations such as UNEP Kenya, UNESCO IOC and World Meteorological organization. He has widely travelled to more than 35 countries.

He was the recipient of 11 distinguished awards at the national and international level. He had christened and executing a student AUV competition wherein winning student team is deputed to USA to participate in the International competition. He started Marine Technology Society in India and started four student chapters in colleges and 5 students received scholarship awards. He has been selected for the prestigious MTS Lockheed Award for Ocean Science and Engineering for the year 2017. I organized school students camps on ocean technology and electrochemistry annually and recently conducted Guinness World Record on largest Biology lessons class in Chennai.

He has guided students for Masters Degree dissertation and PhD. He had executed projects having direct relevance to the society to support livelihood of coastal fishermen and received Tamilnadu State scientist award for his contribution. He is working on many collaborative projects both national and international level with leading Universities in USA, UK Japan.

He has to his credit 100 papers in Journals and 135 papers in conferences/ seminars and has delivered more than 250 invited lectures in conferences.co authored 2 books he is writing a book now and filed 6 patents; Editorial board member of two international journals

His international positions include Steering committee member for Asia Pacific in GOOS UNESCO IOC, DOOS OceanSITES; Chair of ITP Data buoy Cooperation Panel UNESCO IOC and WMO Chairman MTS Materials committee and at national level Chairman IEEE OES India Section; Chairman of MTS India Section; Chairman IEI Kancheepuram; Vice President of NACE South India section; Member of committee for SME by Confederation of Indian Industry; Member of Defense Manufacturing committee of ASSOCHAM. As a Chair of Committee on International guidelines for oceanographic instruments by DBCP under WMO and IOC I am working on standards for instruments

He is working with 15 Institutions in USA under Indo US programme on Monsoonal studies in Bay of Bengal; PI for RAMA Programme under Indo US collaboration and Bio inspired systems with Virginia Tech University

His specialization includes Bio inspired systems, Materials for marine applications, Oceanographic measurements and ocean policy


  • 35 years of experience in the field of Ocean Science and Technology
  • 1997 to continuing in National Institute of Ocean Technology Chennai India
  • 1982 to 1997 National Institute of Oceanography Goa India
  • Seagoing experience of more than 2500 days on board Indian & foreign vessels’
  • Led team to install India s first Observatory in Arctic IndARC

Present position

  • Group Head – Ocean Observation Systems
  • Mentor - Sea front facility NIOT
  • Co PI Indo US programme on Bay of Bengal Monsoonal studies
  • Scientist In Charge Student Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Competition


  • Steering Committee Member for Deep Ocean Observing Strategy (DOOS) Project of UNESCO IOC
  • Steering committee member Asia-Pacific GOOS UNESCO IOC nominated by Govt. of India
  • Data Buoy Cooperation Panel of UNESCO IOC & WMO Chair International Tsunameter Partnership; WG Vandalism of Ocean Platforms
  • National Consultant SACEP-NORAD-International Maritime Organization by Govt, of India
  • Country focal Point Belmont forum Arctic
  • Member of Joint WMO/IOC Technical Commission for Oceanography and Marine Meteorology (JCOMM)


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