Re­search comes alive

Lab West cam­pus physics in­struc­tor pub­lishes book on ma­te­ri­als and nan­otech­nol­ogy

The Labradorian - - EDITORIAL -

Gurinder Kaur Ah­luwalia has be­came a first-time au­thor, not be­cause she had as­pi­ra­tions of writ­ing a book, but be­cause the sci­en­tific com­mu­nity was ea­ger for more in­for­ma­tion on the ap­pli­ca­tions of chalco­genides S, Se and Te.

Chalco­genides — de­rived from the Greek lan­guage mean­ing ‘ sul­phur- lov­ing’ for el­e­ments that fre­quently bond to sul­phur — are com­pounds of met­als with sul­phur (S), se­le­nium (Se) or tel­lurium (Te).

Ah­luwalia is a physics in­struc­tor at the Col­lege of the North At­lantic’s (CNA) Labrador West cam­pus, and has es­tab­lished an in­no­va­tive Ma­te­ri­als and Nan­otech­nol­ogy Re­search Lab­o­ra­tory. Ah­luwalia had more than 70 re­search pa­pers pub­lished in var­i­ous sci­en­tific jour­nals be­fore be­gin­ning the writ­ing stage for “Ap­plica- tions of Chalco­genides: S, Se and Te.”

The book broad­ens the reader’s un­der­stand­ing of an ex­haus­tive list of chalco­gen-based prod­ucts used in nu­mer­ous in­dus­trial ap­pli­ca­tions such as data stor­age de­vices, and op- tical com­mu­ni­ca­tion and sens­ing de­vices.

She says she was en­cour­aged to write the book fol­low­ing pre­sen­ta­tions on the sub­ject. Then, Springer Pub­lish­ing, an Amer­i­can com­pany that fo­cuses on aca­demic jour­nals and books in tech­nol­ogy and health sci­ences sec­tors, re­quested she write it. She signed an agree­ment and started writ­ing in 2014. She re­leased in this past Novem­ber.

“Time was a chal­lenge for this be­cause it re­quires a lot of time, ef­fort and con­cen­tra­tion in ad­di­tion to my teach­ing re­spon­si­bil­i­ties at the col­lege,” she said. “I am lucky that my co­work­ers at the Labrador West cam­pus are highly sup­port­ive of my re­search ac­tiv­i­ties and come for­ward will­ingly to pro­vide any sup­port.”

Orig­i­nally it was her in­tent to write the book her­self, but be­cause of time con­straints other sci­en­tists in re­lated fields au­thored or co-au­thored some of the chap­ters. Ah­luwalia coau­thored the book with seven of her peers from the sci­en­tific com­mu­nity, in­clud­ing fel­low CNA in­struc­tor Ran­jan Pa­tro, who teaches physics at the Happy Val­ley-Goose Bay cam- pus.

Ah­luwalia says her book will ap­peal to a broad au­di­ence — from post-se­condary stu­dents and sci­en­tists to any­one work­ing in the physics, chem­istry, ma­te­rial tech­nol­ogy and in­for­ma­tion science sec­tors.

Since the book’s re­lease in Novem­ber, she has been in­vited to present the work at nu­mer­ous con­fer­ences around the world — in­clud­ing Ro­ma­nia, Ja­pan, In­dia, China, the United King­dom, the United States, and here in Canada.

“It’s been good,” she said. “I think the re­sponse to the book has been over­whelm­ing. It has been great ex­po­sure. Even some of my old col­leagues that I had lost con­tact with for a long time have con­tacted me.”

The re­sponse has been so pos­i­tive that she may even write an­other book in the fu­ture.


Af­ter in­creased de­mand from col­leagues in the sci­en­tific com­mu­nity, Gurinder Kaur Ah­luwalia, a physics in­struc­tor at the Col­lege of the North At­lantic’s Labrador West Cam­pus, pub­lished her first book.

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