Dr. Hardarshan Singh Valia presenting his book entitled "Indiana Coals and the Steel Industry" to Indiana Senator Dan Coats (Posted by Suresh Bodiwala, Community Contributor)

New York (TIP): Dr. Hardarshan Singh Valia, has the distinction to be the only Coal Scientist in the world who is honored with all three prestigious awards bestowed upon him by the American Steel Industry.

He is the first-ever Indian American to receive the Iron & Steel Society’s Joseph Becker Award (for distinguished achievement in coal technology) for his work on coal usage in the steel industry.

He is the First ever Indian and Second ever Asian person to receive Iron & Steel Society’s Joseph Becker Award (for distinguished achievement in Coal Technology) for his work on Coal Usage in Steel Industry. Dr. Valia was awarded Joseph Kapitan Award (best paper) from the Association for Iron and Steel Technology on his work regarding unique properties of Indiana coals. He is also a recipient of the American Iron and Institute Medal. These honors have brought him the distinction of the only Coal Scientist in the world to have received all the three awards offered by American Steel Industry related organizations.

“It is like a Hollywood actor winning all three, the Academy Award, Grammy Award and the Amy Award,” said Rajinder Singh Mago, a friend.

Dr. Valia recently presented his book entitled “Indiana Coals and the Steel Industry” to Senator Dan Coats of Indiana who is tirelessly working to improve economy and create jobs in Southern Indiana by unlocking affordable energy while protecting the environment. The book is collaborated with Dr. M. Mastalerz, the State Coal Geologist of Indiana Geological Survey.

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Utilizing certain unique properties of Indiana coals, Dr. Valia, in collaboration with Allen Ellis and other scientists from Purdue University, earned a patent entitled “Multipurpose Coke Plant for Synthetic Fuel Production.” Such a process would result in not only production of coke for the steel industry but can also produce diesel oil, methane gas, hydrogen, fertilizer, and power. Such an approach would usher in totally new industry to coal belt of southern Indiana where coal production is declining as it is mainly utilized to power industrial sector. This would help in revitalizing the industry, bringing jobs and improving the economy of the region. This also has implications for the nation as a whole. America has the largest global share of recoverable coal reserves that will last for more than 200 years.

“One needs to recover “value added” products from coal rather than just burning it in the power plants,” said Dr. Valia, “thereby reducing our dependence on foreign liquid fuels,” he added. Purdue research Foundation under the leadership of Dr. Robert Kramer and Dr. Valia, is leading such an effort.

Dr. Valia’s emphasis on production of diesel fuels from coal was also presented in a series of his lectures in India, as India has large resources of coal but has shortage of oil.

Dr. Valia has published 85 articles, contributed to 5 books (including Making, Shaping, and Treating of Steel), chaired 30 National/International conferences, taught 20 courses worldwide, authored two patents, consulted to many industries around the world.

Dr. Valia, after retiring as a Staff Scientist from Arcelor Mittal (formerly Inland Steel Company), started his own consulting firm Coal Science Inc. and also jointly owns Coal science Laboratory in Gary, Indiana.

Dr. Valia received his Masters in Applied Geology from Nagpur University and Masters in Geology from Bryn Mawr College.


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