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Celebrating Women Leaders at NETL - Ranjani Siriwardane

Ranjani Siriwardane

Research Scientist


After receiving her doctorate in physical chemistry from Virginia Tech, Ranjani Siriwardane joined the NETL team in 1988. She is currently a dedicated and ambitious research scientist at the Research and Innovation Center in the Materials Engineering and Manufacturing division.

Siriwardane has completed impressive work as she was involved in the development of sorbents for carbon dioxide (CO2) removal from both post combustion and pre-combustion gas streams, sulfur removal for coal gasification systems and oxygen carrier development for clean energy production with inherent CO2 capture via chemical looping combustion.

Through work that she has completed, Siriwardane has 28 U.S. patents and 99 refereed journal publications. Some of these technologies that she patented have been licensed to U.S. companies. In addition to this, she has won three R&D 100 awards, which are awards given by R&D Magazine to the 100 most technologically significant new products for a given year. She was also ranked among the top 2% of scientists worldwide according to Stanford University List, and among the best scientists in the world according to, an international ranking organization.

In her current position, she directs research work on chemical looping and catalyst development for H2 (a clean fuel) production from fuels with no CO2 emissions. The sorbents and oxygen carriers she designed have shown promising results during both lab scale and pilot scale demonstrations.

Siriwardane has been in the NETL Equal Employment Opportunity committee in charge of the Asian and Pacific Islander program. She also works as a scientific judge in the West Virginia Science Bowl for high school and middle school. She has mentored students and young researchers at NETL to conduct research and has provided free science and math tutoring for high school and college students.

Women’s History Month is very important to Siriwardane because it recognizes the contributions from women that helped advance society. More specifically, it encourages women to advance their careers and recognizes the opportunities available for women.

“Particularly, in STEM fields it is important to increase the participation of women, otherwise, talents and contributions by large percentage of our population to improve our society will be wasted,” said Siriwardane.

She mainly believes that women’s history month gives a platform to encourage women to go toward STEM careers that can be very rewarding.

Ranjani Siriwardane, Ph.D.

Ranjani Siriwardane

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