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JV Rajendran
Dr. Jeyavijayan "JV" Rajendran’s research focus is on hardware and computer security. | Image: Texas A&M Engineering

Dr. Jeyavijayan "JV" Rajendran was one of 12 researchers named 2023 fellows of the Texas A&M University Research Leadership Fellowship (RLF) program, which is part of the university’s new collaborative research seed grant initiative, ASCEND. As part of this fellowship, Rajendran will develop comprehensive cybersecurity for industrial-control systems found in power plants, gas pipelines, oil refineries and nuclear facilities, which are critical national assets in the United States.

Protecting these industrial-control systems is critical for national security.

Dr. Jeyavijayan "JV" Rajendran

Even though humans are at the center of many industrial control systems, such as nuclear reactors, there are still many sensors and activators involved that collect and utilize data. Because of the natural connectivity of these assets, they are susceptible to cybersecurity attacks and must be protected. Rajendran plans to take a holistic approach to rebuilding this critical infrastructure.

“Protecting these industrial-control systems is critical for national security,” Rajendran said. “I am excited to help rebuild this security infrastructure for many companies and industries.”

The RLF program, which launched in January 2023, will develop the next generation of research leaders and provide a new opportunity for the submission of interdisciplinary grant proposals. Fellows will participate in informational and experiential components, namely leadership-training workshops, fellowship-community events and interdisciplinary proposal submissions.

Rajendran’s research interests are in hardware security with a specific focus on supply chain vulnerabilities and bug detection. His research has won many awards, such as the Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award, the National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award, the Association for Computing Machinery's Special Interest Group on Design Automation Outstanding Young Faculty Award and the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station’s Genesis Award for Multidisciplinary Research.