IST hosts Grav­i­ta­tional Waves sym­po­sium

Pakistan Observer - - TWIN CITIES - STAFF RE­PORTER

IS­LAM­ABAD—The sci­en­tific community in a sym­po­sium on ‘Grav­i­ta­tional Waves’ re­solved to ini­ti­ate an Astro­nom­i­cal and As­tro­physics So­ci­ety to pro­vide a plat­form to peo­ple from as­tro­physics and other fields of as­tron­omy to grow and in­ter­act. The sym­po­sium was held at In­sti­tute of Space Tech­nol­ogy (IST),the event was one of first of its kind, to be held any­where in Pak­istan af­ter the dis­cov­ery of waves. It has been a cen­tury since Ein­stein first pre­dicted ex­is­tence of the grav­i­ta­tional waves as one of the con­se­quences of gen­eral rel­a­tiv­ity.

But their di­rect de­tec­tion did not come about un­til last year, when LIGO de­tec­tors fi­nally re­ceived the sig­nal from merg­ing black holes some bil­lions of miles away. Dr Far­rukh Chishtie, pro­fes­sor and head of Space Sci­ence Depart­ment at IST ini­ti­ated the event by wel­com­ing and thank­ing all the par­tic­i­pants. The open­ing talk was pre­sented by Dr Hamid Saleem, exDG of Na­tional Cen­ter for Physics and presently a pro­fes­sor at IST.

It was an in­tro­duc­tion to light and how it bears mes­sages from worlds far­ther away from own. Later, the ideas of gen­eral rel­a­tiv­ity and the sig­nif­i­cance of GWs was put in place by Dr Abid H. Mu­jtaba, a math­e­mat­i­cal and com­pu­ta­tional physi­cist at COMSATS Is­lam­abad. More than 180 par­tic­i­pants from uni­ver­si­ties across Pak­istan, at­tended the ses­sions. They spanned di­verse fields in­clud­ing en­gi­neer­ing, medicine and re­mote sens­ing. Their in­tense dis­cus­sions fol­lowed the ques­tions with the guest speak­ers. The en­tire story of the dis­cov­ery was pre­sented by Dr As­ghar Qadir,awarded Hi­lal-i-Im­tiaz and Si­tara-i-Im­tiaz by govern­ment of Pak­istan.

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