Washington: Three Indian-Americans figured among the 12 scientists named by US President Barack Obama for the country's top awards in the field of scientific research and innovation.
   
Indian Americans included in the list are Srinivasa S R Varadhan from the New York University; Rakesh Agrawal from the Purdue University and B Jayant Baliga from the North Carolina State University.
   
While Vardhan has been named for the National Medal of Science, two other scientists have been selected for the National Medal of Technology and Innovation.
   
These are the highest honors bestowed by the US government on scientists, engineers and inventors.
   
"Each of these extraordinary scientists, engineers, and inventors is guided by a passion for innovation, a fearlessness even as they explore the very frontiers of human knowledge and a desire to make the world a better place to live ," Obama said in a statement.
   
"Their ingenuity inspires us all to reach higher and try harder, no matter how difficult the challenges we face," he said.
   
The recipients will receive their awards at a White House ceremony later this year.
   
The White House said Varadhan has been selected for his work in probability theory, especially his work on large deviations from expected random behavior which has revolutionized this field of study during the second half of the 20th century and which has become a cornerstone of both pure and applied probability.
   
The mathematical insights he developed have been applied in diverse fields including quantum field theory, population dynamics, finance, econometrics, and traffic engineering, the White House said.
   
Rakesh Agrawal has been selected for an extraordinary record of innovations in improving the energy efficiency and reducing the cost of gas liquefaction and separation.
   
1These innovations have had significant positive impacts on electronic device manufacturing, liquefied gas production, and the supply of industrial gases for diverse industries; the White House said.
   
Baliga has been selected by US President for development and commercialisation of the Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistor and other power semiconductor devices that are extensively used in transportation, lighting, medicine, defense, and renewable energy generation systems; the White House said.
   
The National Medal of Science was created by statute in 1959 and is administered for the White House by the National Science Foundation.
   
Awarded annually, the Medal recognizes individuals who have made outstanding contributions to science and engineering.
   
Nominees are selected by a committee of Presidential appointees based on their extraordinary knowledge and contributions in the field of chemistry, engineering, computing, Mathematics and the biological, behavioral/social, and physical sciences.
   
The National Medal of Technology and Innovation was created by statute in 1980 and is administered for the White House by the US Department of Commerce's Patent and Trademark Office.
   
The award recognizes those who have made lasting contributions to America’s competitiveness and quality of life and helped strengthen the Nation’s technological workforce.
   
Nominees are selected by a distinguished independent committee representing private and public sectors.

(Agencies)