Ripudaman Malhotra is the associate director of the Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory at SRI International. In this role, he works extensively on the processing, properties, and analysis of coal, oil, natural gas, and biofuels. Malhotra conducts detailed mechanistic studies in these systems and has developed innovative processes to achieve desired product selectivity and increased efficiencies.
Malhotra’s work on coal liquefaction and pyrolysis resulted in identification of novel pathways for hydrogen transfer by which strong bonds in coals are broken, and his work on fullerenes led to the discovery of the catalytic properties of the fullerene soot—the by-product—for hydrocarbon processing. He considers himself a soldier in President Jimmy Carter's "moral equivalent of war" to gain energy independence, and recently co-authored a book on global energy titled, A Cubic Mile of Oil.
Malhotra was named an SRI Fellow in 2005. In 2015, he was given the Henry H. Storch Award in in Fuel Science by the American Chemical Society.