07-NOV-2016: The Neutrino Physics Group of the Department of Physics, Aligarh Muslim University recently concluded a five-day International Workshop on Frontiers of Electroweak Interactions of Leptons and Hadrons.
In his presidential note, AMU Vice Chancellor, Lt General Zameer Uddin Shah (Veteran) said that research in the field of fundamental sciences helps us to understand nature and it is designed to lead us to new discoveries and thereafter applied science uses these discoveries to give us tangible results.
Affirming that the "frontline research, whether in Physics, Biology or Chemistry, has always been challenging", General Shah pointed out that research in the area of particle physics was arduous.
He made it clear that neutrinos, being an elementary particle, a fundamental constituent of nature, needs to be detected, observed and understood.
Gen Shah further said that neutrino is both a puzzle and a solution to a puzzle, and efforts are being made to understand the elusive nature of this particle.
Guest of Honour, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Brigadier S Ahmad Ali (Veteran) said that the Electroweak Interactions is the unified description of two of the four known fundamental interactions of nature viz. electromagnetism and weak interaction.
Prof Sajjad Athar, Convener of the workshop said that the workshop focused on the latest experimental work being done in the field of neutrino oscillations in leading laboratories of USA and Japan like Fermi National Laboratory in Batavia near Chicago and JPARC in Japan near Tokyo and the theoretical work being done in various Indian institutions like TIFR, HRI, IOP, IMSC, DU and AMU along with University of Rome (Italy) and University of Kelvin (Spain).
He further said that neutrinos like electrons are elementary particles and most abundant particles after photons, but little understood.
"The endeavor to understand nature and learn its intricacies require great efforts znf for every proton, neutron and electron, the Universe contains a billion of neutrinos," said Professor Sajjad adding that without neutrinos, there would be no shine in the Sun and stars.
He added that trillions of neutrinos pass through our thumb per second unnoticed and it is but natural to be inquisitive about this particle.
"Since they are weakly interacting particles, it is very difficult to observe them," said Prof Sajjad adding that it is really a challenging task for the people working in this field to investigate neutrinos more closely.
Prof Sajjad Athar also said that there is a need to work through an MoU to be signed by a Consortium of Indian Institutions with AMU as leading facilitator and Japanese scientists working on T2K experiment.
The workshop also had deliberations on the implications of future theoretical and experimental work to be done in the next 10 years on our understanding of nature and universe.
The workshop was inaugurated by Professor Takaaki Kajita, the Nobel Laureate in Physics-2015 for his work on neutrino oscillations and was attended by more than 125 scientists and researchers from various countries like USA, UK, Italy, Spain and Japan and about 100 participants from various institutions in India.
From the inaugural to the valedictory function, more than 35 speakers presented a review of recent advances in various branches in this field and about 30 research contributions from the research group working in various institutions of India were presented.
The workshop was preceded by a meeting of Japanese and Indian scientists to explore the opportunities for doing research in Neutrino Physics. The meeting was arranged by the Neutrino Physics group of AMU and was presided by the Vice-Chancellor and was attended by Prof Takaaki Kajita, and Professors T Kobayashi of KEK Lab. and T Nakaya of JPARC Lab. Tokyo. More than 20 scientists for TIFR, DU, BHU and Aligarh Muslim University attended the meeting.
The meeting concluded with a very enthusiastic support towards formulating a structured framework for implementing a common program of joint research in the field of Neutrino Physics.