State-of-art HPC lab and GIAN course inaugurated at JMI
A state-of-the-art HPC (High-Performance Computing) laboratory was inaugurated in Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI) coinciding with the launch of a week-long GIAN course, a flagship programme of HRD Ministry, on theories of relativity offered by an international expert on the subject, RadounaeGannouji of Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaiso, Chile.

The laboratory sponsored by SERB-DST (Science and Engineering Board – Department of Science and Technology) was inaugurated at the Centre for Theoretical Physics (CTP) by Vice-Chancellor, Prof Talat Ahmad in the presence of Prof M. Sami, CTP Director, Prof Sushant Ghosh, Hony. Joint Director Research, JMI, Director Multidisciplinary Centre for Advanced Research and Studies (MCARS) and Course Coordinator of the GIAN programme, Prof Sharif Ahmed, Dean Natural Sciences, Prof Aman Jairajpuri, Local GIAN Coordinator, Prof. S. A. M. Rizvi, Head, Department of Computer Science, Dr H. J. Abidi University Librarian, Prof Badrul Alam, Dept of Political Science, and other senior faculty members and participating delegates in the GIAN course.

Over 50 faculty members, scholars and students from various universities in the country are participating in the course titled, “On the viability of theories beyond Einstein’s General Relativity”. This is 4th GIAN programme organized by CTP which has also been a recipient of the President of India Visitor’s Award for Research in Cosmology and Astrophysics in 2015.

Prof Ahmad who was the Chief Guest on the occasion congratulated CTP and Prof Ghosh for successfully starting the high-end laboratory which will benefit scores of researchers who can now access such facilities easily. Prof Ahmad said that it was a matter of great satisfaction that it was the 24thGIAN course being conducted by JMI, the second highest by any university in the country.

Prof Ahmad said that JMI has been progressing well and recently it has been bestowed with the ‘university of the nation’ award. This shows that JMI is doing well and people are taking note of its progress.

Prof Gannouji, a researcher in General Relativity and Theoretical Cosmology who obtained his PhD under the supervision of the well-known scientist, Prof David Polarski said his training was not just about science and innovative thinking but a lot about diversity. Giving his own personal experience, he said he was born in Morocco and was educated in France, Italy and Japan. He said that cultures impacted science in their own way, so unlike his native country, France was all about mathematics while Italy had a more physical approach to things. And all these experiences have enhanced his understanding of the subject.

Prof Sami, Director CTP said that his centre has an old association with Prof Gannouji having co-authored many seminal and ground-breaking research papers with him. He praised Prof Gannouji for his commitment and scientific rigour and said that he was internationally acclaimed expert on gravity. He hoped that the participants will gain tremendously from his lectures. He said that this course was timely and will prove to be a pre-requisite for the upcoming BRICS 2018 conference in South Africa which is on the same topic as the course.

Prof Ghosh said that it was due to the personal initiative of the Vice Chancellor that JMI’s research and ranking profile had gone up significantly. He also welcomed Prof Pitayuth Wongjun from Thailand who was visiting CTP as part of the ICTP, Italy funded India-Thailand-Uzbekistan (ITUN) network which has resulted in the exchange of scholars between the participating nations. He said that as a course coordinator of the GIAN programme and Project Investigator of the newly established HPC lab, he hoped that these efforts will give a further boost to the ongoing research in JMI in general, and MCARS and CTP in particular.