Venkat’s — Professional Background


Expertise in Powder Processing and Technical Ceramics with Extensive Technical/Creative Writing and Editing Experience.

Contact Details:    +1 412 491 6705 (Mobile) 


1. B.Tech. from the University of Madras in Chem. Engg., and

2. M.S. and Ph.D. in Materials Science and Mineral Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.

My comprehensive background in i) Powder Processing for Technical Ceramic Applications, and ii) Creative Writing, Editing and Publishing is unusual as you will see below.

I.  Powder Processing for Technical Ceramics — at Alcoa Technical Center (1984-2004) and Almatis, Inc. (2004-2020): 

a) An exhaustive understanding of particle/powder characterization (PSDs, surface areas, shape factors, bulk chemistries); and ceramic parts characterization (microstructure evolution development during sintering, sintering profile optimization, grains size and pore size distributions).

b) Thorough understanding of powder/particulate processing starting from crushing, screening, the whole range of batch and continuous ball milling, air classification and closed-circuit ball milling, jet milling. Full grasp of the fundamentals of size reductions in terms of fracture mechanics, internal dynamics of ball mill in terms of mill size, mill speed, ball load, ball size distributions, optimization of ball mill speed, ball load and ball size distributions for specific applications.

c) Solved many challenging powder/particulate processing problems related to starting powders for high-performance ceramics (including Multilayer Cofired Parts) and steel-making end applications, focusing on productivity and yield, QA/QC, system design, process and flowsheet development… …

d) Developed compatible multi-component particulate systems required in complex Multilayer Cofired Technologies for high-end applications.

e) Conducted several lab- and pilot-scale powder/particulate processing tests at vendors’ labs and scaled-up the data for developing production-scale flowsheets for demanding applications.

f) Worked with plant engineers and operators in Asia, Europe and the US for problem solving in the above.

II.  Creative Writing, Editing, and Publishing: 

a) Demonstrated skills in technical and creative writing, copyediting, proofreading.

b) Published several technical papers in professional journals, bylined articles in metro dailies, and publishing a community magazine The Pittsburgh Patrika, Inc., ( that is in its 27th year.  The magazine was founded in 1995.

d) Have good interpersonal skills working against self-imposed deadlines, and working professionally with business clients, outside writers, and tax consultants.

III. Professional Experience:

i) Worked at the Alcoa Technical Center (1984-2004), the central R&D lab of Alcoa, Inc. on developing powder process technologies for diverse applications;  

ii) Was the leader of a Global Task Force for powder and particulate processing at Almatis, Inc. (2004-2020), where I was the considered a veteran for addressing challenging problems, and for projects in powder/particulate processing.

iii) Worked closely with my colleagues in North America, Europe, China, India, and Japan for completing assignments.  Worked with people from different cultures and with different temperaments.

iv) Executed projects working with people who were NOT directly reporting to me.

v) I enjoy writing.  I have published peer-reviewed papers in technical journals and also in metro dailies on subjects of topical interest outside my technology background.  I have written countless internal formal reports and prepared several PowerPoint documents for new projects, and for training purposes for the company.  I led regular conference calls and face-to-face meetings with participants from EU and NA, and Asia. 

vi) I also edit and publish a small quarterly community magazine, The Pittsburgh Patrika, Inc. (, now in its 27th year. This magazine I founded in 1995 is mailed to over 1800 homes every three months. 

For the list of my publications in professional journals and Metro dailies, click here.