The University of South Dakota

Prof. Ranjit T. Koodali
 Dean of Graduate School and Professor of Chemistry
University of South Dakota
414 East Clark Street, Vermillion SD 57069, USA



Prof. Ranjit T. Koodali is Dean of The Graduate School and a Professor of Chemistry at the University of South Dakota (USD), Vermillion, South Dakota (SD). Dr. Koodali was born in Kerala, India and obtained his M.Sc. and Ph.D. from Indian Institute of Technology (I.I.T.) Madras. His admission to the Ph.D. program was based on two nationally competitive examinations: i.) Joint CSIR-UGC Eligibility  Test for Junior Research Fellowship and Lectureship in which he was placed among the top eleven candidates in India in the subject of Chemistry, and ii.) Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE), in which he scored 99.25 percentile in Chemistry which placed him in the top ten in in India.

After extensive Post-Doctoral experiences, he joined USD in August 2005.

Dr. Koodali received the USD President’s Research Award for Excellence in the Early/Mid-Career Category in 2010. In addition, Dr. Koodali received the 2013 Cutler Award in the Natural Science and Math category for excellence in teaching and research for the period, 2010-2012 from the College of Arts and Sciences, USD. Dr. Koodali is also a recipient of the USD President's Research Award for Excellence in the Established Faculty Category in 2013 in his first year of eligibility. His current research work relates to the application of nanomaterials for environmental remediation and solar energy. His areas of research encompass synthesis and characterization of nanomaterials and their applications towards photochemical storage and conversion of solar energy. Dr. Koodali is also part of an interdisciplinary team interested in impacts of land use to the Missouri River floodplain. He has one patent in the area of photocatalysis and has over hundred and thirty three published works.

His very first research project in solar hydrogen production was cited by the National Science Foundation (NSF) as an example of transformative work and was among the eleven projects highlighted by NSF in its budget request to Congress for the fiscal year 2013.

His research has been supported by internal grants from USD, The SD Board of Regents, Department of Energy (DOE), National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Dr. Koodali serves as a regular journal reviewer for over 100 scientific journals that include: ACS Catalysis, ACS Nano, Applied Catalysis B: Environmental, Catalysis Communications, Catalysis Science and Technology, Catalysis Today, Chemical Communications, Chemistry of Materials, Energy and Environmental Science, Inorganic Chemistry, Journal of Catalysis, Journal of Materials Chemistry, Journal of Physical Chemistry C, Journal of The American Chemical Society, Langmuir, Physical Chemistry and Chemical Physics, Scientific Reports, Small etc.
Dr. Koodali is an Associate Editor for RSC Advances and Nanomaterials and Nanotechnology, and serves on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Civil Engineering and Environmental Sciences.
He finds mention in 57th, 58th, 60th, 61st, 63rd, 65th, 67th, 68th, and 69th editions of Who’s Who in America, 6th and 7th editions of Who's Who in Science and Engineering, and the 11th and 12th editions of Who's Who among American Teachers & Educators.
Dr. Koodali serves as the Public Relations (PR) Chair of the Sioux Valley local section and Program Secretary for the Energy and Fuel (ENFL) Division of the American Chemical Society (ACS). He served as the National Program Co-Chair for the fall 2013 ACS meeting and as National Program Chair of the ENFL division for 2014. 
He has supervised five Doctoral Dissertations, thirteen Masters Theses, and twelve undergraduate Honors Theses. Thirty four undergraduate students that include two Goldwater Scholars, four NSF Graduate Research Fellows, two National Defense Science and Engineering Grant (NDSEG) Awardees, one National Health Corps scholar, one NASA National Aeronautics Scholar, and one NCAA post-graduate scholar have pursued undergraduate research in his group. Graduate students from his group have been awarded nationally competitive grants from the International Precious Metal InstituteSigma-Xi Grants-in-Aid-Research Awards, and research grants from USD. His research group consists of two Ph.D., one M.S., and one undergraduate student.
Dr. Koodali appears once a month (the fourth Friday) on South Dakota Public Broadcasting (SDPB) In the Moment: Innovation to talk about current research in Chemistry.
In 2016, Dr. Koodali, became the first Chemist in the Dakotas to be a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC).





Newsworthy Accomplishments (Research)
  1. Crystal Engineering Communications - Inside cover story in Feb. 14, 2016 issue.
  2. USD chemistry graduate student awarded at MIT clean energy symposium/USD graduate student wins award at MIT symposium
  3. 14 USD scholars selected for U.Discover summer research (Thorn Dramstad)
  4. Selected articles in Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy brought by Co-Editor-in-Chief John Turner
  5. USD students to present research at Pierre poster session
  6. Nanomaterials for environmental applications (Special issue in Journal of Nanomaterials)
  7. Chemistry student presents poster at prestigious MIT women in clean energy symposium
  8. Converting sunlight to hydrogen fuel: Splitting water using photocatalysts (Check out the You Tube video link,
  9. USD recognizes faculty with President’s research awards
  10. 2013 Cutler awards honor distinguished faculty members at USD
  11. Recent advances in solar energy conversion and utilization

  12. Catalysis Today focus issue: Solar fuels, guest edited by R. Subramanian, V. Subramani, and R. Koodali

  13. Undergraduate research played an integral part in my experience at USD

  14. USD student recipient of International young scientist award

  15. USD researchers honored with Nelson faculty research grant

  16. Hot perspective: Lanthanide doped photocatalysts (this paper was among the top 10 downloaded articles in Catalysis Science and Technology for February and April 2012).

  17. USD Professor shoots for the moon (courtesy - Sioux  City Journal)

  18. USD chemistry professor earns plaudits for extraordinary research (Mesoporous Material Transforms Solar Energy Into Fuel, also cited in the NSF Budget Request to Congress for FY 13)

  19. Dr. Ranjit Koodali of the University of South Dakota (USD) discusses the application of mesoporous materials towards creating cost-efficient solar technology

  20. Three USD faculty members honored for research excellence

  21. Student from the U recognized for precious metals research

  22. Physical chemistry professor at the U nets NSF grant

  23. Gov. Rounds awards grants to university-based researchers

News (Others)
  1. USD Graduate School host 3MT competition (Theepan wins first 3MT competition)
  2. Frank Leibfarth: 2017 Alumni Emerging Leader Award
  3. Dean of Graduate School and Professor of Chemistry Receives Award from American Chemical Society/Chemistry professor awarded for hard work and dedication
  4. Five minutes with Ranjit Koodali
  5. Koodali elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (First FRSC from the Dakotas!)
  6. Researchers to train STEM students for Business
  7. Chemistry Professor named Dean of Graduate School (link to Aviso)
  8. Students and Faculty Honored at President's Celebration of University Leadership (Thorn Dramstad and Sunav Shrestha)
  9. A creative approach to solar energy use
  10. Sustainability and solar energy conversion
  11. USD initiates 32 into state's only Phi Beta Kappa chapter (Hayley Naasz) 
  12. Cover image credit to catalysis journals - Elsevier
  13. NMM concert featured Peebles
  14. Sustainability - Faculty spotlight
  15. USD chemistry professor oversees ENFL symposia at national ACS gathering
  16. SUNEC 2014
  17. USD chemistry professor oversees ACS international meeting activities
  18. Chemists in the real word  (Featured chemist in March 2014)
  19. Bazinga!
  20. USD physical chemistry professor organizes solar energy symposium
  21. S.D. connects with bio companies
  22. Professor at the U contributes to environmental applications of nanoscience symposium book series
  23. Nettleton becomes USD's eighth Goldwater scholar
  24. Student at The U recognized by USA TODAY for academic and civic achievement
  25. USD student Frank Leibfarth wins national Goldwater scholarship
  26. Chemistry student at The U receives prestigious travel grant

Research Publications in 2018
1. Mesoporous silicate nanoparticles/3D nanofibrous scaffold-mediated dual-drug delivery for bone tissue engineering, Qingqing Yao, Yangxi Liu, Balaranjan Selvaratnam, Ranjit T. Koodali, Hongli Sun, Journal of Controlled Release (10.1016/j.jconrel.2018.04.011), 279, 69-78, 2018.
2. Interconnected ZrO2 doped ZnO/TiO2 network photoanode for dye-sensitized solar cells, Abdulmenan M. Hussein, Anastasiia V. Iefanova, Ranjit T. Koodali, Brian A. Logue, Rajesh V. Shende, Energy Reports, (10.1016/j.egyr.2018.01.007), 4, 56-64, 2018.
3. TiO2-MgO mixed oxide nanomaterials for solar energy conversion, Balaranjan Selvaratnam and Ranjit T. Koodali, Catalysis Today, (10.1016/j.cattod.2017.02.006), 300, 39-49, 2018.


Radio Appearances
  1. SDPB Innovation 03/23/2018 – Technology of 4-D printing
  2. SDPB Innovation 02/23/2018 – Hydrocarbons gone amok
  3. SDPB Innovation 01/26/2018 – Chemically strengthened glass
  4. SDPB Innovation 12/22/2017 – Catalyst treatment for exhaust cleanup
  5. SDPB Innovation 12/11/2017 – Tax reform and graduate students
  6. SDPB Innovation 10/13/2017 – The 2017 Nobel prize in chemistry
  7. SDPB Innovation 09/08/2017 – Chemistry can explain why you shouldn't stare at the solar eclipse without protection
  8. SDPB Innovation 08/25/2017 – Core-cross-linked nanoparticles 
  9. SDPB Innovation 07/28/2017 – Highly elastic binders integrating polyrotaxanes
  10. SDPB Innovation 06/23/2017 – Multi step continuous flow process
  11. SDPB Innovation 05/26/2017 – 3D-Printed Evaporator for High-Efficiency Solar Steam Generation
  12. SDPB Innovation 04/28/2017 – Metal Organic Frameworks
  13. SDPB Innovation 03/24/2017 – Oleo sponges (link not available)
  14. SDPB Innovation 02/24/2017 – Fluorinated compounds in U.S. fast food packaging (link not available)
  15. SDPB Innovation 01/27/2017 – Innovation: Nanomachines (link not available)
  16. SDPB Innovation 01/13/2017 – Innovation: Dr. Ranjit Koodali and Dr. Brian Burrell
  17. SDPB Innovation 08/26/2016 – Engineered microbes making silver nanoparticles
  18. SDPB Innovation 07/22/2016 – Turning plastics into fuel
  19. SDPB Innovation 06/24/2016 – Biosynthesized ZnO nanoparticles and soil fungi
  20. SDPB Innovation 05/27/2016 – Light sparks conversion of nitrogen to ammonia
  21. SDPB Innovation 04/22/2016 – Graphene
  22. SDPB Innovation 03/25/2016 – Converting atmospheric carbon dioxide batteries
  23. SDPB Innovation 02/26/2016 – Renewable energy research
  24. SDPB Innovation 02/25/2011 – Research in Chemistry at University of South Dakota  

Team Koodali - Group Members
(Current location may not be accurate)



1. Prof. N. Rajesh (June to July 2014) - Professor of Chemistry, Birla Institute of Technology and Science - Hyderabad, India

2. Prof. Moses Titus Yilleng (August 2016 to May 2017) – Lecturer at Kaduna State University, Nigeria, Fulbright Visiting Researcher



1.   Shrestha, Khadga (May to August 2013)

2.   Parayil, Sreenivasan K. (2011-13) - Currently Faculty, M.E.S. Kalladi College, India

3.   Zhao, Dan (2009-10) - Currently Faculty, Department of Chemical Engineering, Ningbo University of Technology, Ningbo, China



1. Granaas, Paul (Ph.D.)

2. Selvaratnam, Balaranjan (Ph.D.) – USD Graduate Research and Creative Grant 2016-17

3. Thanabalasingam, Kulatheepan (M.S.) – USD Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) 2018 Winner


1. Abdessemed, Ala (Ph.D.) – April to October 2014, visiting Ph.D. student from Constantine University, Algeria

2. Balasanthiran, Vagulejan (M.S. 2010) – International Precious Metals Institute Student Award 2013 - Ph.D. Ohio State University, OH, Jul. 2015,  Post-Doc, University of Virginia, VA

3. Blahna, Chris (M.S. 2012-2014)

4. Budhi, Sridhar (M.S. 2010) - Best Teaching Assistant Award, 2009-10, USD Graduate Research Grant, 2009-10, International Precious Metals Institute Metro New York Chapter Award 2013, Ph.D. Colorado School of Mines, CO, Aug. 2015 - currently Faculty at Eastern Wyoming College, WY

5. Dewitt, Jeremy (M.S. 2013-14 and B.S. Chemistry 2013), SD

6. Harts, Daniel (M.S. 2015-2016)

7. Hussein, AbdulMenan (Ph.D.) co-advisor as part of NSF-IGERT program  - NSF-IGERT Fellow, 2011-14 - Ph.D. South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, SD, Jul. 2015 -  currently Research Scientist and Process Engineer at SDSMT, SD

8. Kibombo, Harrison (Ph.D. 2013 and M.S. 2011) - International Precious Metals Institute Student Award 2010, Sigma XI Award 2011, and USD Graduate Research and Creative Grant 2009-10 and 2012-13 - currently at Intel Corporation, OR

9. Mahoney, Luther (Ph.D. 2015) - NSF-IGERT Fellow, 2011-15 and USD Graduate Research Grant 2014-15 – currently at U.S. Army Research Laboratory, MD

10. Palos Barba, Viviana (M.S.) - Exchange Student from National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), Mexico, Programa de Apoyo a Estudios de Posgrado (PAEP) Scholar, 2017 Mexico

11. Peng, Rui (Ph.D. 2014 and M.S. 2011) - Sigma XI Award 2012 and USD Graduate Research and Creative Grant 2010-11 and 2012-13) – currently at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, TN

12. Psota, Rhett J. (M.A. 2007)

13. Raghupathi, Krishna Reddy (M.S. 2009) - USD Graduate Research Grant, 2009-10 – Ph.D. University of Massachusetts-Amherst, MA - currently at PepsiCo Inc., NY

14. Rasalingam, Shivatharsiny (Ph.D. 2015 and M.S. 2012) - Best Teaching Assistant Award, 2011-12, USD Graduate Research Grant 2014-15 and 2012-13, finalist at The National Graduate Student Poster Competition, Women in Clean Energy Symposium at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 2013, and International Precious Metals Institute Student Honorary Award 2014 – currently at University of Jaffna, Sri Lanka

15. Sadhu, Satya Sai (M.S. 2008) – Ph.D. South Dakota State University (SDSU), SD, May 2015 currently Assistant Professor, Augustana University, SD

16. Sapp, Wendi (Ph.D.) - Dell-Intel/O’Brien Award for Undergraduate Students, 54th Annual Sanibel Symposium 2014, NSF-IGERT Fellow, 2015-16 - currently at University of Nebraska-Omaha, NE

17. Shrestha, Sunav (M.S. 2016) - Third Place in Graduate Poster Competition at Fourth Annual Clean Energy Education and Empowerment (C3E) Symposium at MIT, 2015; 2015-2016 USD Graduate Research and Creative Grant, AmPharmCo, TX

18. Subramanian, Hari (M.S 2008) – currently Ph.D. at North Dakota State University, ND

19. Thiruppathi, Eagappanath (M.S. 2011 and Ph.D. Biomedical Engineering 2014) - Sigma Xi grant 2013 and USD Graduate Research and Creative Grant 2013-14 – currently at Inanovate Inc., SD

20. Wu, Chia-Ming (Ph.D. 2015, M.S. 2008) - International Precious Metals Institute Student Honorary  Award 2013 – currently, CA



1. Alberts, Blake D. (B.S. Chemistry Summa Cum Laude 2010) – Sanford School of Medicine Alumni Student Scholar, undergraduate research - summer and fall 2007 - M.D. Columbia University, NY

2. Anderson, Zach (2016 Undergraduate Award in Organic Chemistry, 2016 American Chemical Society Sioux Valley Section Outstanding Senior Awardee), SD

3. Becker, John (B.S. Chemistry 2011) undergraduate research – spring and summer 2010

4. Berdanier (Patrick), Catherine (B.S. Chemistry Magna Cum Laude 2010-University Scholar) – 2011 NASA Aeronautics Scholarship (among the 5 in the nation), 2010 National Science Foundation - Graduate Research Fellowship Program Awardee and NSF IGERT fellow), Ph.D. Purdue University, IN, currently, Research Associate, Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering at Penn State University, PA

5. Bloch, Tyler (undergraduate research - summer 2011)

6. Boote, Brett (NSF-REU student 2006 from Northwestern College) - currently Ph.D. at Iowa State University, IA

7. Castle (nee Gonshorowski) Andi (B.S. Chemistry Cum Laude 2011) – undergraduate research – spring 2009 and summer 2009, spring 2010 and summer 2010) - currently Ph.D. at Iowa State University, IA

8. Dramstad, Thorn (Presidential Alumni Scholar, 2015 U.Discover Summer Scholar, 2016 USD Council on Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship, 2016-2017 Dean Joseph H. Cash Award for Excellence in Writing, 2016 NSF-REU Scholar, 2016-2017 John W. Carlson Research Grant, 2016-2017 SD Space Grant Consortium Fellowship, Honors Thesis Distinct Scholar) - currently Ph.D. at University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, MN

9. Fischer, Logan (Joint with Dr. M. Kadarkaraisamy, NSF-REU - undergraduate research summer 2013 student from Wayne College, Wayne, NE - currently Process Laboratory Technician at Michael Foods, NE

10. Fleming, Daniel (B.S. Chemistry 2010) undergraduate research - fall 2008, spring 2009, and summer 2009)

11. Freeman, Katie L. (Joint student with Prof. Miles D. Koppang) (B.S. Chemistry Summa Cum Laude 2008-University Scholar), 2008 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Postgraduate Fellow, M.D. Carver School of Medicine, University of Iowa, 2012) - currently Residency at University of California, San Francisco, CA

12. Gillespie, Andrea (B.S. Chemistry 2010) – undergraduate research - fall 2009 and spring 2010), - currently at B/E Aerospace, NH.

13. Grady, Anne M. (B.S. Chemistry Magna cum Laude 2010-University Scholar) – Presidential Alumni Scholar, 2011 National Health Service Corps Scholar - M.D.  and Residency, Sanford School of Medicine, USD, 2015.

14. Haeder, Paul R. Dr. (B.S. Mathematics Cum Laude 2007-University Scholar), M.D. USD, 2011 - currently Residency at KU School of Medicine-Wichita, KS

15. Helenurm, Kevin (NSF-REU student from Whitman College) - joint with Dr. A. Sykes

16. Jacobson, Andrew (B.S. Chemistry 2011) - undergraduate research - spring 2011

17. Kindle, Trevor (B.S. Chemistry Summa Cum Laude 2013) -  undergraduate research – fall 2012 and spring 2013, Merck Index Award Winner and American Chemical Society Sioux Valley Section Outstanding Senior Award winner) – currently M.D. at Sanford School of Medicine, USD

18. Krug, Alyssa - (B.S. Chemistry 2017) undergraduate research - spring 2016)

19. Kumaraswamy, Vyshnavi (B.S. Biology 2014) (joint with Dr. Gina Forster) - Sri Lanka

20. Leibfarth, Frank A. (B.A. Chemistry, Physics Summa Cum Laude – 2008 - University Scholar) – Mickelson Scholar, 2006 Goldwater Scholar, 2007 All-USA College Academic First Team, 2007 Pardee Prize, 2008 National Science Foundation-Graduate Research Fellowship Program Awardee, and 2008 National Defense Science and Engineering Grant (NDSEG) Awardee, Ph.D. Chemistry at University of California-Santa Barbara, NSF Post-Doc Fellow at MIT, MA – currently faculty at University of Carolina – Chapel Hill, NC

21. McGurk (Nettleton), Elizabeth G. (B.S. Chemistry Summa Cum Laude – 2008 – University Scholar), 2007 Goldwater Scholar, 2008 Pardee Prize, 2009 National Science Foundation-Graduate Research Fellowship Program, and 2009 NDSEG Awardee – M.A. University of Texas–Austin - currently at Trinity Consultants, Austin, TX

22. Naasz, Hayley (2012 Argus Leader Academic All Star, Mickelson and Phi Beta Kappa Scholar, 2015 Pardee Prize, 2015 American Chemical Society Sioux Valley Section Outstanding Senior Awardee, 2016 USD Council on Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship, 2016 Undergraduate Research Excellence Award, 2016 Merck  Index Award, Honors Thesis Distinct Scholar) – M.D. degree at Sanford School of Medicine, USD, SD

23. Parker, Nicole M. (B.S. Chemistry Cum Laude 2007) - undergraduate research – summer 2006 and spring 2007, Creighton University School of Nursing

24. Peterson, Alexander (undergraduate research fall 2011)

25. Rodriguez, Adrian M. (B.S. Chemistry 2012) -  undergraduate research summer and fall 2009, summer 2010 and summer 2011) - currently IT Specialist at Black Hills Federal Credit Union, Rapid City, SD

26. Rydell, Rachel R. (B.S. Chemistry 2006 and P.A. 2011) - Cum Laude - undergraduate research - spring 2006 - currently PA-C, Sanford Health, Sioux Falls, SD

27. St.Pierre, Jordan J. (B.S. Chemistry 2010 University Scholar) - currently Lead Scribe at Scribe.ology. Fort Worth TX

28. Stern, Kaitlyn (USD Council on Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship-2016, Honors Thesis nominated for Distinction) - currently at Aberdeen Catholic School System (Roncalli) - Aberdeen, SD

29. Turgeon, Antony undergraduate research – spring 2006, currently 3M, MN

30. Turner, Mark D. (B.S. Chemistry 2010, Magna Cum Laude) undergraduate research – spring 2009), M.D. Sanford School of Medicine, USD 2016, Residency University of Iowa, IA

31. Weber, Amanda S. (B.S. Chemistry 2009 University Scholar, 2010 National Science Foundation-Graduate Research Fellowship Program Awardee - Ph.D. Chemistry at University of California–Irvine Aug. 2015 – currently at Intel, Portland, OR

32. Wieseler, Carissa (B.S. Chemistry 2014) - American Chemical Society Sioux Valley Section Outstanding Senior Award winner) - currently at Ross University School of Medicine, Dominica

33. Zeleke, Samerawit (B.S. Chemistry 2008) undergraduate research – spring 2008, MD Indiana University School of Medicine - currently residency at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital, IN.



1. Ragothaman, Sowmya (2016 Argus Leader Academic All Star) – currently at University of Kansas, KS

2. Venkatachalam, Ananth – currently at University of Nebraska-Lincoln, NE

Team Koodali - Group Pictures

Team Koodali - Research Instrumentations  


Teaching Philosophy


   Locations of visitors to this page

The University of South Dakota practices Inclusive Excellence, the notion that different cultures, groups, and individuals bring a variety of talents and gifts that contribute to the educational mission of the university, in particular the preparation of leaders for a diverse world.

The views and opinions expressed in these pages are strictly those of Dr. Ranjit T. Koodali. The contents in this page(s) have not been reviewed or approved by The University of South Dakota.

Last updated April 25, 2018