“Powering Pakistan for the 21st Century” is a three-volume document prepared by the Pakistan Alliance for Maths and Science (PAMS) in collaboration with partners including the Khwarizmi Science Society.
The third volume is titled “A Roadmap for Maths and Science Education”. The purpose of this report is to highlight the importance of maths and science education in Pakistan's classrooms, especially those in government schools, where the least privileged of the country's children study.
In the third volume, a series of ideas and recommendations will be presented that can help Pakistan, as a state and as a society, re-orient public policy and private investment decisions, to serve a more prosperous future. This report will be launched on Friday in collaboration with Khwarizmi Science Society and will be hosted by Lahore University of Management Sciences.
The location of the event cn be viewed here.
Here is General Secretary, Dr. Sabieh Anwar's speech at the Prime Minister House at the occasion of the launch ceremony of Volume I. The speech spells out a charter for practical science education.
The gallery can be viewed here:
Registration is free of cost but required. To register visit this link.
Graphene is an emerging material, like a rising star on the horizon of physics. Acclaiming the Nobel Prize in physics in 2010, the two dimensional crystal continues to surprise us with new physics as well as new applications that are destined to reach the commercial sphere.
In this lecture series, we have invited Pakistan's two most distinguished scientists to discuss the fundamental physics. The understanding of graphene has opened up new doors of inquiry. What immediately catches our attention is the emergence of new physics: relativistic quantum effects, which previously, are only the ambit of high energy physicists. With graphene, for example, it is now possible to mimick these high energy effects on the tabletop. This lecture series aims at:
- describing relativistic quantum mechanics,
- understanding how the charge carriers in graphene are massless Dirac fermions,
- understanding the electronic structure of this two dimensional material,
- unravelling some of its exciting transport and structural properties, and
- appreciating the role of disorder in graphene.
The schedule of the lecture series is as follows.
|Friday, 20 May 2011||3-4 pm||KS 1||What is graphene?|
|4-5 pm||RD 1||Introduction, Free particle, Dirac Equation (Derivation), Dirac Algebra, Dirac Equation in the presence of electromagnetic field.|
|5:30-6:30 pm||KS 2||Electronic structure of graphene (part 1)|
|Saturday, 21 May 2011||10-11 am||RD 2||Dirac Chiral representation and Dirac Equation in 2- components form; prediction of magnetic moment of electron and spin. Dirac equation for Hydrogen like atoms (exact solution) and spin – orbit splitting of energy levels.|
|11 am - 12 noon||KS 3||Electronic structure of graphene (part 2)|
|12 - 2 pm||Lunch and prayer break|
|2-3 pm||RD 3||Lorentz invariance of Dirac equation, Dirac bilinears (their transformation properties under Laurentz Transformation and parity); Particle current. Hole theory and existence of positron.|
|Sunday, 22 May 2011||10-11 am||RD 4||Dirac equation in (1 + 2) dimensions and its relevance to Graphene. Inequivalent representations of Dirac Gamma-matrices (a feature of odd number of space – time dimensions). Role of parity in (1 + 2) dimensions and how it can be used for defining conserved chiral currents.|
|11 am - 12 noon||KS 4||
Electronic structure of graphene (part 3)
|12-1 pm||Lunch and prayer break|
|1-2 pm||RD 5||
For registration to this event, visit the Registration page.
Let there be Light: An Overview of Solid State Laser Technology (Dr. Tayyab Imran)
From Theodore Maiman’s small ruby laser to ultrafast Ti:Sapphire laser technology, a solid state laser technology revolution, earning important roles in scientific research, engineering, medicine, materials working, and a host of other applications.
The Use of Lasers in Opthalmology (Dr. Nadeem H. Butt)
Laser Assisted Pump-probe Studies of Atoms (Dr. Aslam Baig)
Laser assisted spectroscopic technique have been exploited to study the highly excited states of atoms; a pump probe experiment. In this technique, at least two dye lasers are required; the first dye laser serves as an exciting laser whereas the second laser serves as an ionizing laser. A Nd:YAG laser SHG (533nm, 500 mJ) and THG (355 nm, 200 mJ) is used to pump the TDL-90 dye laser (line width »0.08 cm-1) and locally fabricated dye lasers (line width »0.25 cm-1) for multi-step or multi-photon excitation/ ionization of atoms. The ions are detected either in a thermionic diode ion detector or in an atomic beam apparatus. We have also utilized the polarization properties of the laser beams to measure the photoionization cross sections of the excited states of atoms. A few examples of the spectra will be presented in addition to the latest experimental results on the photoionization of atoms from the Free Electron Laser Source (FLASH).
Lasers from Islamabad, Lahore and Cern: What Binds them Together (Dr. Shaukat Hameed Khan)
The laser is just 50 years old but it is shaping our lives in diverse manners. One key area is precision of measurement. A small Pakistani innovation to the design of the system which makes up the massive detectors in the Large Hadron Collidor at CERN in Geneva is discussed. This is placed in the context of mankind’s greater quest over the centuries for precision, whether these relate to his position on earth or in space, or timekeeping. The principal features of the laser programme in Pakistan is presented briefly.
Laser-generated Pulsed X-ray Sources (Dr. Fida Khattak)
I would be presenting the basic principles of x-ray generation via different schemes using high power laser pulses for the non-specialized. I would be also presenting some experimental results for the audience having research interest in the field.
Fundamentals of Fiber-optic Communications (Dr. Mumtaz Sheikh)
Ever since the advent of the internet, fiber optic communication systems play an important role in our everyday lives. This talk would focus on how do these systems work, what is so special about them compared to traditional electrical communication systems, what kind of
lasers are suitable for such systems, what are some of the issues and tradeoffs that a designer has to consider while designing such systems and where is the technology headed in the future.
Light: Its Applications in Interferometery, Polarimetry and Photodynamic Therapy (Dr. Masroor Ikram)
Light is one of the oldest subject but its true nature has yet to be fully discovered. For more than hundred years its dual nature is well accepted. Optics and Laser Group in PIEAS has worked on some of its applications. Michelson interferometer was reported in the late nineteenth century but its use for precise measurement of angle and axis of rotation is reported very recently. Polarization imaging can produce very high contrast and the technique is useful for material characterization. Photodynamic therapy is an emerging technique to cure the cancers with high selectivity. In the technique, two individually non-toxic components brought together to cause harmful effects on cells and tissues in the presence of oxygen.
Islam and the Transformation of Greek Science
(Dr. George A. Saliba)
This illustrated talk examines the often repeated characterization of the role of Islamic science as preserving the Greek scientific legacy. It will demonstrate with concrete examples the extent to which Greek science had to be transformed in order to respond to ritual and cultural requirements of Islam, thus critiquing that science and eventually replacing it with a science that was more scientifically consistent. It was this transformed Islamic science that inspired later on the Renaissance scientists.
Islamic Science and the Making of the European Renaissance
(Dr. George A. Saliba)
This illustrated talk will examine the scientific ideas that were first developed in the Islamic world, especially those dealing with planetary theories, and later used in the Latin sources that were produced during the European Renaissance, and in particular in the works of Copernicus. All the evidence for these ideas comes from pages of original Arabic and Latin manuscripts.
Double Incoherence and Double Jeopardy:
Retelling the Story of Attitudes to Science in Islamic Societies
(Dr. Syed Nomanul Haq)
Living as we do in the twilight of the Enlightenment, a simple ready-made myth about the career of science in Islamic societies still lurks about. This myth has two pseudo-historical elements that fit nicely into a comforting ideological framework. These two elements can be described as reductionism and double-marginalism. The first has it that any achievement made by scientists in the classical Islamic world is reducible to a linear growth of Greek science; the second that those who engaged in genuine science in the Islamic culture were marginal to their society’s mainstream, and that science itself is marginal to Islam. It is an inevitable expression of this alien nature of science in relation to the Arabo-Islamic milieu, so the pseudo-history announces, that Ghazali wrote his Incoherence of the Philophers, an attack that was refuted by Ibn Rushd’s Incoherence of the Incoherence: but Ibn Rushd was fighting a losing battle, and science came to a grinding halt after Ghazali in the early 12th century. My lecture promises to revisit this story and to demonstrate (1) that it is historically absurd and that (2) it stands on the ideological ground that science—that rational, naturalistic study of nature which is doing wonders for us—is essentially a Western phenomenon.
With Friends Like These Who Needs Enemies:
The Irrationality of Supporting Science by Attacking Religion
(Dr. Basit B. Koshul)
A number of recently published books claiming to support and defend science in the face of mounting threats from the dark forces of religion have made it to different best-selling lists. Almost invariably their support and defense of science is premised on (or requires) an attack on religion. The line of reasoning adopted in these books is based on the claim that science equals rationality and religion equals irrationality. Looking at this argument from the perspective of Max Weber's study of the historical development of rationality it is clear that this argument is held together by an insidious sleight of hand—changing the definition of "rationality" in the middle of the argument and then changing it again just before the conclusion. Weber's thoroughly researched findings at the beginning of the 20th century shed light on the current discussion in two ways: a) his research lays bare the intellectual chicanery of those whose support of science necessitates an attack on religion, b) his insights demonstrate that this irrational and unethical attack on religion is actually a frontal assault on the integrity of science. In short, Weber's work helps us to see that science has very little to fear from (some of) its enemies in comparison to threat that it faces from (many of) its friends.
The morphological properties of galaxies depend strongly on the star formation rates. One of the fundamental problems in astronomy is to determine the rates at which massive stars are forming in different types of galaxies in different environments. The spiral galaxies have been classified into three major categories based on the size of their bulge, the tightness of their spiral arms, and the resolution of individual star forming regions. These three types are Sa, Sb, and Sc galaxies. Earlier studies have suggested that star formation rates increase from Sa to Sc galaxies. We are conducting a large survey of Sa galaxies in order to determine various properties of these galaxies. Our preliminary results suggest that, contrary to the earlier results, star formation rates in these galaxies are comparable to the star formation rates in Sc galaxies. Furthermore, it seems that a significant fraction (15-20%) of these galaxies are going through a phase of interaction in the current epoch.
Lecture I: The Stellar Drama: The Birth, the Life and the Death of the Stars
How do stars evolve? Hubble Space Telescope has revolutionized stellar astronomy by capturing stunning images of stars about to be born to the remnants of massive stars that went supernovae. We will trace the history of stars from their birth to their ultimate, possibly catastrophic, demise.
Lecture II: A Tale of a Billion Galaxies
Once called the "island universes", galaxies represent a spectacle with beauty unparalleled in the universe. What are the factors that give rise to the different shapes of these galaxies? How do the nearby galaxies relate to the galaxies at the farthest reaches of space and time? Equipped with the Hubble Space Telescope, we will try to address these questions in the second part of the cosmic trilogy.
Lecture III: The Cosmic Saga: From the Big Bang to the Ultimate Fate of the Universe
How did it all start and how will it all end? Once purely in the domain of philosophy, cosmology - the study of the universe, is fast becoming an observational science. We shall look at the Big Bang Model of the universe in the light of current observations. We shall also discuss the role of dark matter and the ultimate fate of the universe.