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Powerful recognition for research

Queen’s researcher Praveen Jain receives the prestigious IEEE Medal in Power Engineering – the highest international award in the field of electrical power.

Praveen Jain, Canada Research Chair in Power Electronics and Director of the Queen’s Centre for Energy and Power Electronics Research (ePOWER), has been awarded the 2021 IEEE Medal in Power Engineering for contributions to the theory and practice of high-frequency power-conversion systems. He is only the third Canadian to receive this medal in the history of the IEEE.

[Photo of Praveen Jain and his IEEE medal]
Dr. Praveen Jain (Electrical and Computer Engineering)

IEEE medals are the highest honours given by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the world’s largest association of technical professionals. The IEEE Medal in Power Engineering recognizes researchers who have made outstanding contributions to the technology associated with the generation, transmission, distribution, application, and utilization of electric power for the betterment of society. It is given to one out of approximately 50,000 IEEE members working in research related to electrical power every year.  

"This medal symbolizes 40 years of my life’s work in the practical applications of power engineering," says Dr. Jain. "I am indebted to Queen’s University for providing me a world class platform to realize my dream. I dedicate this medal to my students and collaborators who have contributed enormously to my success."

Since coming to Queen’s in 2001, Jain has helped transform the way society understands electrical energy, advocating for its sustainable generation, distribution, and utilization and contributing to innovations in applications for space, telecommunications, computer, induction melting, and renewable energy industries. One of the first researchers to solve long-standing problems in induction melting power supply systems, Jain proposed inverter circuit configurations now applied worldwide by the induction heating industry. Jain’s new class of AC-to-DC converter topologies provided a breakthrough in the design of compact, lightweight, and efficient power supplies for high-frequency power distribution systems in space applications. He also led the development of constant frequency resonant converter topologies for high-density power supplies for telecommunications.

Jain’s innovative digital control techniques have also revolutionized the design of power converters in computer applications. The patented technology, adopted by most chip manufacturers, has been incorporated in the development of digital power controllers with ultra-fast dynamic response for computer microprocessors. Jain also developed new power converter topologies and control techniques for photovoltaic microinverters. Currently, he is leading a team of researchers from Queen’s, York University, Western University, and the University of Ottawa in the development of a prototype smart microgrid platform that will help meet greenhouse gas emission goals and other industry standards.

In his career so far, Dr. Jain has secured over $35 million in external research funding and his work has resulted in over 600 publications and over 100 patents. He has earned numerous awards and honours, including being named a Fellow of the Engineering Institute of Canada, the Canadian Academy of Engineering, the Royal Society of Canada, and the IEEE. He has also founded two companies, CHiL Semiconductor designing digital power control chips, and Sparq Systems developing solar microinverters.  

"For decades, Dr. Jain has worked to help industries around the world understand and meet their power needs in more cost-effective, environmentally friendly ways," says Kimberly Woodhouse, Vice-Principal (Research). "My sincere congratulations to him on this prestigious career honour."

Dr. Jain received the IEEE Medal in Power Engineering during a virtual award ceremony on May 13. For more information on the medal, visit the website.