Dr. Raja is a Professor in the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at The University of Texas at Austin. He holds the Robert L. Parker Centennial Professorship in Engineering. Dr. Raja has a Ph.D in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin, M.S. in Nuclear Engineering from Texas A&M University, and a B. Tech in Aerospace Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Chennai (Madras) India.
Dr. Raja`s research interests are in low-temperature glow discharge plasmas. He employs both computational modeling and experimental approaches for fundamental studies of plasmas and their applications. Current research topics include:
- Plasma actuators for supersonic and hypersonic flow control
- Microdischarge-based small satellite plasma propulsion
- Study of rail-armature contact gap plasmas in electromagnetic launchers
- Atmospheric-pressure non-equilibrium discharge phenomena
- Computational methods for plasma simulations including High-Performance Computing (HPC) techniques
Current and past research sponsors include the National Science Foundation (NSF), Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR), Ad-Astra Rocket Company, and Institute for Advanced Technology (IAT). He received the prestigious National Science Foundation CAREER award in 2001.