Praveen Jain – 2023 Killam Prize


Queen's University

Praveen Jain is a trailblazer in the field of power electronics and one of the most prolific inventors in the art of processing electrical energy through electronics for the efficient generation, transmission, and utilization of electric power. He has made numerous original, high impact contributions in high-frequency power conversion technology that have led to its use in telecommunications, space, computer design, induction melting and renewable energy industries. Currently, Jain is a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Director of Centre for Energy and Power Electronics Research at Queen’s University.

Jain made pioneering contributions in introducing resonant power conversion technology in telecommunications during his work at Nortel in the 1990’s. He played a key role in the design and development of high frequency power conversion equipment for the International Space Station at Canadian Astronautics in the late 1980’s. His innovative work in digital control techniques revolutionized the design of digital power controllers for computer microprocessors and has been adopted by most chip manufacturers. He also developed new power converter topologies and control techniques for photovoltaic microinverters, and most recently turned his attention to energy storage.

Over the last 43 years, he has made sustained contributions to the theory and practice of power electronics. He is the named inventor of more than 100 patents and the founder of two successful companies: CHiL Semiconductor, in the area of digital power controller (acquired by International Rectifier), and SPARQ Systems (TSXV:SPRQ), in the area of photovoltaic microinverters and energy storage.

In addition to being a world-authority in his field, Jain is also an exceptional teacher who has mentored over 100 research trainees. His contributions towards undergraduate education have been recognized by Queen’s University with the Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor of the Year Award (2017) and the Electrical and Computer Engineering Teaching Award (2014-2015).

For his ground-breaking research work, he has been recognized with numerous awards and honours. He received the 2021 IEEE Medal in Power Engineering for contributions to the theory and practice of high-frequency power-conversion systems—the highest award in his field. He also received the 2017 IEEE Canada Electric Power Medal, the 2011 IEEE William E. Newell Technical Field Award in Power Electronics, and the 2004 Engineering Medal from the Professional Engineers of Ontario. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, a Fellow of the IEEE, a Fellow of the Engineering Institute of Canada and a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering.

Tune in for All in a Day with Alan Neal at CBC for his conversation with Praveen Jain, winner of the 2023 Killam Prize in Engineering, and Claire Davies, recipient of a Dorothy Killam Fellowship for her work on developing guidelines for accessible communication devices.


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