Thyaga Nandagopal

Thyaga Nandagopal

Deputy Division Director
Division of Computer and Communication Foundations (CCF)
National Science Foundation

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I work at the National Science Foundation in the Directorate of Computer & Information Science and Engineering (CISE).  I am the Deputy Division Director of the Division of Computer and Communication Foundations (CCF) within CISE, serving in that role since January 2018. Prior to this role, I was a Program Director in the Computer and Network Systems division since 2012, where I managed wireless networking and mobile computing research within the Networking Technologies and Systems (NeTS) program at NSF. 

I currently serve as the co-chair of the Wireless Spectrum Research and Development Senior Steering Group (WSRD SSG), which co-ordinates spectrum-related research and development activities across the Federal government.  I am an IEEE Fellow, elevated to this rank for the Class of 2016. I am spearheading the $100 million Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research (PAWR) program that aims to create four advanced wireless research platforms in cities across the United States over the next five years. Within the CCF Division, I am enabling research in two of the 6 research themes within the Big Ideas @ NSF: "The Quantum Leap: Leading the next Quantum Revolution", and "Harnessing the Data Revolution".

At the National Science Foundation, I have also helped run various other programs relevant to pushing the frontiers of computing and communications research. Some of these programs are: CISE Research Infrastructure (CRI), Expeditions in Computing, Algorithms in the Field (AitF), Spectrum Efficiency, Energy Efficiency, and Security (SpecEES), Industry/University Collaborative Research Centers (I/UCRC), and Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR).

In my past life, between 2002 and 2012, I was with Bell Labs, the research arm of Lucent Technologies which later became Alcatel-Lucent in 2006.  I was a Member of Technical Staff at Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs, in the Networking Research division. My research interests dealt with Networking in the Cloud, Green Networking and Software Defined Networks. In this role, I helped pioneer the development of the first commercial carrier-grade Software Defined Network Platform (ALU 9980 AINP) between 2006 and 2008, with industry-leading features such as service-chaining, and network function virtualization. This work was based on our research dating back to 2004. In addition to this, I have worked extensively on wireless ad hoc/mesh networks, sensors/RFID systems with specific focus on algorithms for enabling efficient operations of these systems.  I have 38 US patents and several international patents.

I received my Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2002. I previously received my Masters degrees in Applied Mathematics and Computer Engineering from UIUC in 2000, and 2002 as well. My undergraduate institution is the College of Engineering, Guindy, from where I earned my B. Engg. in Electronics and Communication Engineering in 1997. I am an IEEE Fellow, and a life member of the ACM.