Dr Thanikaivelan Palanisamy

Principal Scientist, Central Leather Research Institute (Council of Scientific & Industrial Research)

Areas of Interest:

Development of cleaner leather processing, Biotechnological applications to leather and related industries, Development of new and advanced materials in the field of Nano, Bio and Composite Materials, Clean technologies and solid waste management.


Leather Science and Technology, Nanomaterials, Biomaterials, Composites, Waste utilization

Consultancy Areas:

Clean technologies and solid waste management, Cleaner leather processing, Nanomaterials, Biomaterials.


Sector Associated With:


Sectors Interested to Offer Service:

Educational / Academic institutions, Industry (Private), Industry (PSUs), R&D Organizations, Government (including funding agencies), Entrepreneurs, Venture Capitalists

Major Professional Contributions:

The researcher is a young scientist, who in a relatively short career in research has gained critical and important leads towards causing a paradigm shift in leather processing. He has attempted an integrated solution to environmental problems in leather processing from first principles. The importance of contributions of the researcher arises from the approach to clean tanning and attempt to cause paradigm shift from chemical to bioprocessing of leather. This work has led to greener alternatives to hair removal and fibre opening using enzymes and near zero waste chrome tanning through process/product innovations. An integrated solution to environmental problems in tanning is significant.
The researcher has developed his research goal from cleaner processing of leather into the utilization of solid wastes as well as in the manufacture of tanning salts. It is an approach to maximize the utilization of skin and its constituents in leather processing. The process rationale designed by the researcher has recognized that the logic of conventional leather processing employs a "Do-Undo" principle. In other words, in one of operations, certain chemicals are added and physico-chemical changes in skin or hides are brought about through a "Do" logic and in the next set of operations, the physico-chemical changes are reversed by way of "Undoing" what was done earlier. The researcher has developed an approach to overcome the inefficiencies of the conventionally and commercially used process logic through an integrated and path-breaking alternative. Some of the clean processes/products developed by the researcher have been transferred to the leather chemical manufacturi ng houses and tanneries.
Recently, his team has developed high-value carbon nanostructures from skin/leather wastes for various applications including energy storage. They also prepared hybrid films and composites from skin and leather wastes for biomedical and other industrial applications. An approach has also been made to convert skin/leather wastes into nanobiocomposites using nanomaterials such as superparamagnetic iron oxide for high-value applications including environmental protection.

Professional Experience:

  • From Junior Scientist to Principal Scientist in CSIR-CLRI from 2002 to till date


Leather, Materials, Waste, Biotechnology, Nanotechnology.


Contact Information


Tel.(Off) : 91-44-24910953; 24437113
Fax: 91-44-24911589
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  • B.Tech.
  • M.Tech.
  • Ph.D. in Leather Technology from Anna University in 1997, 1999 and 2003, respectively


Awards and Major Professional Recognitions

  • 2010-2011 Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Fellowship from United States-India Educational Foundation (USIEF), New Delhi
  • INAE Young Engineer Award 2006 from Indian National Academy of Engineering (INAE), New Delhi.
  • CSIR Young Scientist Award 2006 in Engineering Sciences from Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR), New Delhi.
  • Biotech Product & Process Development & Commercialization Award – 2005 from Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India.
  • Awarded BOYSCAST Fellowship for the year 2004-05 from Department of Science & Technology (DST), Government of India

Link to Website

INAE Section Affiliated IV: Chemical Engineering

Year of Election to Fellowship: 2013

Year of Birth: 1976