Physicist Current Affairs - 2020

Scientist Thanu Padmanabhan gets MP Birla Memorial Award

The 62 year old Physicist and Cosmologist Thanu Padmanabhan was conferred the prestigious M P Birla Memorial Award 2019 for his contributions to the world of cosmology. He received the award at a programme held at M P Birla Planetarium in Kolkata. The planetarium is currently in its 54th year and had played a pioneering role by initiating an Astronomy Awareness Programme in 1965.

About Thanu Padmanabhan

He is a professor of Inter-university Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics in Pune, Maharashtra. He is a Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar awardee as well as a Padma Shri-recipient scientist (2007).

He is a visiting faculty to several institutes in the US and the UK and has contributed to the fields of general relativity, gravitation and cosmology. He is currently involved an adjunct faculty member of IISER (Mohali), IISER (Trivandrum) and Jamia Millia Islamia and had been adjunct faculty of TIFR, IISER (Pune), Raman Research Institute and Harish Chandra Research Institute.

About M P Birla Memorial Award

The award was established in 1993 to recognise the excellence in research in space science, astrophysics, astronomy, and related areas. It comprises a citation, trophy and a cheque for Rs 2,51,000.

Previous recipients of MP Birla Memorial Award include former president APJ Abdul Kalam and a host of noted physicists such as Dr GM Nair, Prof KD Abhayankar, Prof Govind Swarup and Prof JV Narlikar.

Eminent Physicist P. Hariharan passes away

Eminent Indian physicist Dr Parameswaran Hariharan passed away in California, United States. He was 89.

Physicist career

  • Hariharan had contributed in various researches including in the design of a new 3-beam interferometer, first practical radial-shear interferometer and double passed Fabry-Perot interferometer.
  • He was also the first physicist to apply digital phase-shifting techniques to holographic interferometry in order to measure strains and vector displacements.
  • He had developed multicolour rainbow holograms and improvised multicolour reflection holograms.
  • In his entire career, Dr. Hariharan had authored 4 books and published more than 200 research papers.

Personal life

  • Hariharan was born on December 24, 1926. He was the son of Professor H. P. Waran (H. Parameswaran) of Presidency College and the son-in-law of Alladi Krishnaswamy Iyer.
  • He worked at New Delhi based National Physical Laboratory (NPL) from 1949 to 1951 and at the Ottawa based National Research Council (NRC) from 1951- 1954.
  • He had received a PhD (doctorate) for his work on photographic resolving power.

Awards: Joseph Fraunhofer Medal of the Optical Society of America, Walter Boas Medal of the Australian Institute of Physics and Thomas Young Medal of the Institute of Physics, London.