C. S. Unnikrishnan is a professor of physics at the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, India. He was a visiting researcher at the Kastler-Brossel Laboratory of the Ecole Normale Supérieure in Paris and at the University of Paris 13.
His research interests are experimental and theoretical aspects of foundational issues in gravity and quantum physics, including quantum optics. His experimental expertise spans a wide range of studies employing torsion balances, interferometers, laser cooled atoms, and Bose-Einstein Condensates. He was part of the team that pioneered gravitation experiments in India, in a specially constructed underground laboratory. He set up the laser-cooling laboratory at TIFR, Mumbai, in which the first Bose-Einstein condensate in India was produced and studied in an optical trap. His major theoretical contributions are a new paradigm for dynamics and relativity consistent with the gravity of the matter in the Universe (Cosmic Relativity), and the discovery of a universal action mechanics that solves the vexing foundational problems of quantum mechanics, including the quantum measurement problem.
Unnikrishnan is a key member and a proposer-scientist of the LIGO-India project for setting up an advanced gravitational wave detector in India. He is a member of the global LIGO Scientific Collaboration (LSC) for research in gravitational waves, and shared the Breakthrough prize in physics and the Gruber prize in cosmology with the LSC for the detection of gravitational waves.
Unnikrishnan has published over 250 research papers and articles covering several areas of fundamental physics, especially gravitation and quantum physics. This includes also several papers addressing some core foundational and philosophical issues in physics pertaining to locality and causality, unobservables in physics, space-time ontology, and mind-matter problems. His first monograph "Gravity's Time", on the nature of physical time and its relation to cosmic gravity, was published in April 2022.
Unnikrishnan's major interests outside physics research are music and films, especially their structure and process of creation. He has been a columnist, expressing views on science and society, for Malayalam news magazines.