All the midnight oil burnt and weekends spent poring over books and equipment at the physics laboratory paid off well for Desapogu Rajesh, a research scholar at the University of Hyderabad (UoH). Rajesh completed his PhD in Physics in four years under the guidance of Prof. C. S. Sunandana and Prof. M. Ghanashyam Krishna, faculty in the School of Physics at UoH. He currently has already 16 international publications to his credit and another 5 in the pipeline.
Desapogu Rajesh is full of gratitude and praise for Prof. Sunandana, his favorite guru who created a friendly atmosphere to work in and gave him the freedom to experiment with his research.
Rajesh reminisces that did he not have 300 rupees to buy the EAMCET application form, the result of which landed him his B.Sc. course. He then joined the M. Sc. Physics programme at Sri Venkateswara University, during which he was inspired by Prof. V. Sundara Raja to take up research. He then pursued PhD in Physics at UoH. His love and passion for his research fueled his perseverance and he now works as a visiting post-doctoral fellow at the prestigious Humboldt Universitat zu Berlin, under the supervision of Prof. Stefan Kowarik.
At the Department of Physics at Humboldt Universitat zu Berlin, he is part of a group studying time resolved surface science. The group is concerned with time-resolved experiments studying self-assembly, sensing, and switching of molecules on surfaces. An understanding of these fundamental processes will lead to optimized molecular (opto-) electronic devices and sensors. The groups focus lies on (coherent) x-ray scattering techniques to follow self-assembled growth and structural changes in real-time. Furthermore the group is interested in improving the time resolution and sensitivity of time resolved x-ray measurements such as X-ray growth oscillations.
D. Rajesh is now associated with a university that has been part of the lives of 44 Nobel Laureates, including Schrodinger, Max Planck and Albert Einstein. With a stipend of 1600 euros and the opportunity to work with eminent scientists of the day in his bag, it is not difficult to understand why the man exudes happiness. He says he intends to work hard for the Humboldt/ Marie-Curie fellowship and take up a teaching assignment in one of the IITs. He has also visited the National University of Singapore and worked with Prof. Palani Balaya in June 2013.
Rajesh spends his free time reading Telugu literature, the Bible and tries his hand at drawing. Whenever there is an opportunity, he makes it a point to visit government schools/hostels in villages, interact with the students there and guide them in the right direction. He thanks his parents, friends and relatives for their encouragement, motivation and support.
-Harika Vankadara, MA-Communication