College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Shaurya Purohit came to Iowa State to step out of his comfort zone

Throughout his professional and academic journey, Shaurya Purohit’s philosophy has always been that life begins when you step out of your comfort zone. 

When Purohit received his bachelor’s degree from Manipal University Jaipur in India, he followed that philosophy when he came to Iowa State to pursue his PhD in cyber security in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECpE). He was fascinated by autonomous vehicles and learning how self-driving cars work.  

Purohit names Anson Marston Distinguished Professor Manimaran Govindarasu as someone who helped shape his research direction on autonomous vehicles and navigate cyber security and critical infrastructure topics.  

“His commitment to both supporting me and providing valuable feedback has been really pivotal in helping me in my whole research process and guiding me through a few of my challenging times, and he has inspired me throughout this process,” Purohit says. “So that was definitely a bonus for me with his expertise.”  

Purohit recently began a project in collaboration with the Department of Homeland Security and Argonne National Laboratory to develop an Intrusion Response Network tailored for smart grids using Federated Learning.  

“In this project, we will leverage our power cyber testbed here in Coover Hall at Iowa State. We will be leveraging that for real time implementation using tools like federated learning to enhance upgrade security and privacy in that matter,” Purohit said.  

Purohit is also working on cybersecurity investment analysis using game theory in a project surrounding Electric Vehicle Charging Stations.  

A third project focuses on anomaly detection within autonomous Can-bus networks, which aids in developing a system in electric and autonomous vehicles that effectively prevents cyber-attacks and maintains its reliability and security for interoperable communications.   

When Purohit began at Iowa State, working with big concepts like cyber security, game theory and federated learning seemed incredibly challenging. But Interdepartmental support from professors and research team members within the ECpE played a pivotal role in helping him understand new technologies to pursue his research choices. 

“These experiences and projects which I’ve worked upon at Iowa State have profoundly shaped my approach to research and innovation and have ensured that these technologies are not only to satisfy the current requirements which we might have but also to strategically prepare us for challenges which could arrive, especially in this growing realm of cybersecurity going forward in the future,” Purohit said.