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  • Celebrating the distinguished career of Dr Kamal Hossain OBE

Celebrating the distinguished career of Dr Kamal Hossain OBE

Widely regarded on the world stage as a leading measurement scientist, Dr Kamal Hossain OBE served NPL, UK Government and the global metrology community for 50 years.

We are saddened to announce today (24 January 2022) the passing of our friend and colleague Dr Kamal Hossain OBE.

Kamal joined NPL after completing a PhD in physics at the Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge. Kamal's research centred on the use of high-resolution electron microscopy to understand how the microstructure of materials affects their performance in harsh environments. In 2000 Kamal became NPL’s Research Director and was responsible for the strategic development of NPL's scientific research, developing partnerships with academia, business and government. In 2008, he took on the additional role of leading NPL's international work and became the Research and International Director.

As a result of his extensive experience of advisory work for the Government, the EU and UNIDO, serving on a range of national and international committees, in 2009, Kamal was honoured with an OBE for services to industry.

Kamal was elected as Chair of EURAMET, the European Association of National Metrology Institutes. During his tenure (2012-15), he increased the cooperation between the National Metrology Institutes of Europe and managed a 400M euro European Metrology Research programme, involving 23 participating states. Alongside this Kamal also dedicated his time to working tirelessly to secure funding to establish a larger follow-on programme, a 600M euro European Metrology Programme for Innovation and Research, with 28 participating states.

Under his leadership, EURAMET adopted a strategic approach and the culmination of this was the Strategic Research Agenda, which was published in 2015 and set out objectives aimed at improving the European metrology infrastructure. He ensured that this was developed in consultation with stakeholders across business, academic and regulatory bodies.

He had a significant influence in the development of Horizon 2020, Europe's biggest-ever research programme and was recognised as a thought leader in scientific research policy; particularly in maximising the real economic and social impact of research.

Kamal was a Fellow of the Institute of Physics and had a visiting Chair at the University of Surrey in the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences.

Kamal was always very proud of his Bengali heritage. He spent his early years in Kulut, a farming village in a remote part of West Bengal, India, with no tarred roads or mains services. Kamal’s education began in the village primary school but his father, a lawyer, moved his family forty miles or so to the nearest town, Burdwan, for the boys to have secondary education. From Burdwan Municipal High School, Kamal gained a place at the prestigious Presidency College in Kolkata. In 1967 he left India to study at the University of York.

Kamal never forgot his roots in Kulut. He visited regularly and, in recent years, had funded access to better drinking water facilities for the pupils at his former primary school. He also set aside money to help to improve the facilities. At both primary and secondary schools, Kamal acted as an inspiration and role model for the pupils.

Kamal will be sorely missed by those at NPL and colleagues around the world in the metrology community.


24 Jan 2022