Professor Emeritus



S. Sankararaman was born on 15th October 1957 in Thachanallur, Tirunelveli District. His ancestors belonged to the Village Kodaganallur located on the banks of the river Tamiraparani where he spent most of his childhood. He attended the famous Schaffter High School, Tirunelveli and completed up to SSLC.  After one year break from schooling he joined the MDT Hindu College, Pettai, Tirunelveli DIst. He completed PUC (1976) and B. Sc (1979) and then joined IIT Madras for M. Sc Chemistry (1979 – 1981). He was the first one to attend college in his family. After a brief stint as a Ph. D student at IIT Bombay (about 9 months) he moved to University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada where he did his Ph. D (1985) under the supervision of Prof. Alfred Fischer.  He was a postdoctoral fellow (1985 – 1990) at the University of Houston, Texas USA under the mentorship of Prof. Jay Kochi. After doing postdoctoral research for 5 years he returned to India and was appointed as assistant professor at IIT Madras in 1991. Since then he has been teaching and carrying out independent research in the Department of Chemistry. He spent an year on sabbatical leave at the Institute of Organic Chemistry, Technical University of Braunschweig, Germany, as an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow in the laboratory of Prof. Henning Hopf with whom he had established collaborative research. Sankararaman is very fond of chemistry, thanks to his Chemistry teachers from school and college who had huge positive influence on him and his elder brother Dr. S. Subramanian (Ph. D in Chemistry) who motivated him to take up Chemistry (instead of B.Tech in Metallurgy at IISc Bangalore).  He is passionate about organic chemistry which he pursues to the present day as his research interest. Making new molecules and studying their structure and properties is fascinating to him and keeps him excited in pursuing research in organic chemistry.


  • 1982 - 1985, Ph. D in Organic Chemistry from Department of Chemistry, University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.
  • 1979 - 1981, Master of Science (M. Sc) in Chemistry from Department of Chemistry, Indian Institute of Technology Madras, India - First class.
  • 1976 - 1979, Bachelor of Science (B. Sc) with Chemistry as major and physics and mathematics as ancillary subjects. Madurai - Kamaraj University, Madurai, India - First class.

Research Interests

  • Organic synthesis - synthesis of un-natural organic molecules.
  • Chemistry of D2 symmetric cyclooctatetraene derivatives.
  • Designer molecules to probe pi-pi interactions and hydrogen bonding networks.
  • Organic molecules for energy storage, specifically in organic redox flow batteries.
  • Photochemistry of highly conjugated acetylenic fluorophores .
  • N-Heterocyclic carbene-transition metal complexes and their catalytic activity.

Representative Publications

Selective Synthesis of 3‑Arylbenzo-1,2,3-triazin-4(3H)‑ones and 1‑Aryl-(1H)‑benzo-1,2,3-triazoles from 1,3-Diaryltriazenes through Pd(0) Catalyzed Annulation Reactions. A. Chandrasekhar, S. Sankararaman, JOrg. Chem, 2017, 82, 11487-11493

Synthesis and Structure of 1,4-Diphenyl-3-methyl-1,2,3-triazol-5-ylidene Palladium Complexes and Application in Catalytic Hydroarylation of Alkynes. R. Saravanakumar, V. Ramkumar, S. Sankararaman, Organometallics, 2011, 30, 1689-1694.

Conformational isomers from rotation of diacetylenic bond in an ethynylpyrene substituted molecular hinge. S. Sankararaman, G. Venkataramana, B. Varghese, JOrg. Chem. 2008, 73, 2405-2407.

Intramolecular p-stacking interaction in a rigid molecular hinge substituted with 1-(pyrenylethynyl) units. R. Nandy, M. Subramoni, B. Varghese, S. Sankararaman, JOrg. Chem. 2007, 72, 938-944.

Synthesis of 1,4-cyclohexadiene based acetylenic macrocycles using Cadiot-Chodkiewicz coupling.  Structure of a tub-shaped tetrameric container. A. Bandyopadhyay, B. Varghese, S. Sankararaman, JOrg. Chem. 2006, 71, 4544-4548.


Professor Emeritus
  • +91-44-2257-4210
  • CYB 150B, Department of Chemistry
  • Indian Institute of Technology Madras
  • Chennai - 600036

Honors and Recognitions

  • 2019 Elected as a fellow of the Indian National Science Academy (FNA).
  • 2017 Elected as a fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences (FASc), Bangalore.
  • 2010 Bronze Medal, Chemical Research Society of India in recognition of contributions in chemistry.
  • 1998 - 1999 Alexander von Humboldt Fellowshipfor collaborative research. (on sabbatical leave during May 1998 to April 1999).
  • 1997 DAAD (Germany) Fellowship for short - term visit to Germany for collaborative research.
  • 1996 INSA (India) - DFG (Germany) International Exchange Fellowship for collaborative research.
  • 1984 - 1985 University of Victoria Special Graduate Fellowship (for the best academic record in the University).
  • 1983 - 1984 Lewis J. Clark Memorial Fellowship, University of Victoria (for the best academic performance in the Chemistry Department).