Power of zero: Is zero return a natural a natural benchmark for investors?
Speaker: Dr. Sankar De

Dr. Sankar De has served on the faculty at national and international institutions including University of California-Berkeley, University of Texas-Austin, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Indian Institute of Management – Calcutta, and Indian School of Business-Hyderabad. His research has appeared in leading international journals in finance and economics. His current research interests are the interface between development economics and financial markets. He has served as President of the Asian Finance Association and as a member of the Reserve Bank of India’s committee on Money, Foreign Exchange and Government Securities. He received his PhD in Financial Economics from University of California-Berkeley, Post-Graduate Diploma in Management from Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta, and BA (economics) from Presidency College, Calcutta.

Date: November 18, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 4 PM to 5 PM
Venue : A1 - NKN, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.


As a group, the individual investors are bigger than other groups of investors in Indian stock markets, such as institutional investors, corporate investors etc., in terms of both number and value of trades in Indian stock markets. Our research indicates that the investment and trading decisions of the individual investors are driven by psychological biases well-documented in psychology literature, rather than by rational investment motives. We also identify the nature of the biases. A dominant bias is to consider zero return a natural threshold for their investments. As a result of the biases, the individual investors systematically lose to institutional investors, resulting in a massive wealth transfer. Our research findings are based on evidence from actual trading records of all investors in the National Stock Market (NSE) over a long period.

Why could Europe and not India create Universities?: A self-critical Assessment
Speaker: Prof. Parmod Talgeri

Prof. Pramod Talgeri is currently a Visiting Professor in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, IIT Mandi. He also holds the position of Vice Chancellor of India International Multiversity, Pune. Earlier, he was Vice Chancellor of English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU), Hyderabad. He as awarded PhD from Munich University. He was associated with Jawaharlal Nehru University for more the 35 years where he served as Centre Head for several times. He is a receipt of a number of awards and fellowships such as Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and DAAD fellow.In 2014, he was awarded the prestigious international Merck-Tagore Award for lifetime contribution. Recently, in 2016 Prof. Talgeri was awarded the highest civilian tribute of Germany “Cross of the Order of Merit.

Date: November 11, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 5 PM to 6 PM
Venue : A4 Conference Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.


Till the 16th century Europe and India had a similar level of development. Both the continents were under a deep religious influence. But In the 16th century Europe went in a different direction, in that the sphere of Religion got separated from philosophy and science, and the age of Rationalism emerged. In Europe this crucial intellectual change paved the way toModernity. This did not happen in India. Modernity, basically a European phenomenon, propagated three fundamental Ideas: Freedom, Equality and Individualism based on the principle of rationality.

India’s entry into scientific Modernitywas hampered by the caste barriers of Brahmanism, whichdid not allow any social institution, which has public participation. Therefore, till the arrival of the British,India could not cultivate the idea of University, which promotesmass education and opens its gates to all members of the society. At the most, India remained at the level of Gurukul, which wasmeant only for the privileged class. It ignored the areas of science and technology.Whereas all European languages have the status of “knowledge language”, no Indian language is capable of writing a Ph.D. thesis in natural sciences, engineering or medicine. Particularly the indigenous scientific and technical expertise of the Indian artisans and its scientific and technical vocabulary was never accepted and therefore not included in the dictionary. This exclusion of the Indigenous knowledge has created a deep social bias against our skilled workers like blacksmiths, cobblers, barbers, masons, carpenters, farmers etc. Unlike in Europe their professions are looked down upon by the upper castes reminding us of the controversy over the title of Shah Rukh Khan’s film called “Billu the Barber”, protesting against the epithet ‘Barber’, which has acquired an inner meaning of an abuse to the community of hair dressers. Due to this epithet the members of this community are made to feel ashamed of their legitimate and creative profession. This social injustice needs to be addressed through critical reflection and affirmative action.

Importance of Design for a Technology Institute
Speaker: Mr. Sumer Singh

Mr. Sumer Singh is an Assitant Professor at Instrument Design Development Centre, IIT Delhi. He is currently pursuing PhD from IDDC, IIT Delhi in the area of Sustainable Product Design. Before joining IIT Delhi, he was a faculty at MIT Institute of Design, Pune. He was associated with Dutch Government for Visitors Programme on sustainability and innovation. He is a member of Design Research Society, UK. Mr Singh is also a consultant for LG and designing a universal tap adaptor for washing machine. He has delivered talks at various national and international conferences and workshops. His research interests are Green Design, Sustainable development, innovative Problem solving.

Date: October 25, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 4 PM to 5 PM
Venue : A4 Conference Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.


Students, especially those who opt for technological courses aspire to develop some good outcome from their education. Institutes of technologies also claim of imparting knowledge that is more practical in nature and has application of theories. However for a long time, students are trained for monotonous jobs which can be applied for a factory setup and has very less association with the day-to-day problems, requirements, and business opportunities existing in our society. Such opportunities are harnessed by industries from outside India. Through Design we can train students to harness such opportunities in society as well as engage them in work which is not monotonous in nature along with imparting practical education. Design trains students how to devise and produce objects, artifacts, interactions and systems in response to economic, technical and social needs and desires. It is a rich combination of experiences in imaginative creativity, the humanities and the sciences, with an aptitude of application of the knowledge for benefit of people. Such courses cover design education in general. Students can further be nurtured in the field of Product Design, Automobile Design, Interaction Design, and Design for special needs, Film and video Design, Animation Design.

Science of Climate Change
Speaker: Dr. M. Rajeevan

Dr. Rajeevan received Ph.D. in 1997 from University of Pune and currently holds the position of Secretary to the Ministry of Earth Sciences, Govt. of India. Earlier he has held positions at TIFR, Director of National Climate Center, Adviser to the Ministry of Earth Sciences, Director of Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology.
His research interests are in the filed of climate change and extreme weather events. Currently, his research focuses on monsoon prediction that uses coupled models and decadal variability. Dr. Rajeevan’s research has made important societal contribution that are used by Indian Meteorological Department. He is recipient of several awards and recognition such as START Young Scientist, Fellow of National Academy of Sciences, India and Member of the International Academy of Astronautics. He has published extensively in the field of climate change with over 2600 citations.

Date: October 14, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 4 PM to 5 PM
Venue : A1-NKN, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.


The speaker discusses basics of climate system, global energy balance, trends in greenhouse gases, observed changes in the present climate system, details of the Earth System Models, associated Physics and numerical methods, and future climate change projections. The Earth’s climate system is in equilibrium as the incoming solar radiation is balanced by the out-going long wave radiation from the earth. Any imbalance of this equilibrium can change the global energy balance and can cause changes in different components of the climate system. Due to anthropogenic activities like industries, concentrations of greenhouse gases like Carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide are increasing. This increase of greenhouse gases causes trapping of out-going long wave radiation that increases surface air temperatures, thus global warming. Associated with the global warming, there are many changes in different components of the climate system as we have observed from instrumental data. As greenhouse gases are further increasing, we should expect further warming and thus many associated devastating consequences. Climate scientists use Earth System Models to understand the past and future climate. Earth System Models are mathematical models which use the dynamics and physics of different components of the Earth System, like atmosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, cryosphere and biosphere. The physical processes are included in the model using parameterization methods. The climate change simulations are made using Earth System Models with the help of large high performance computers.

Energy Efficiency of Medium Voltage Drives
Speaker: Prof. J. Holtz

Joachim Holtz graduated in 1967 and received the Ph.D. degree in 1969 from the Technical University Braunschweig, Germany. In 1969 he became Associate Professor and, and in 1971 Full Professor and Head of the Control Engineering Laboratory, Indian Institute of Technology in Madras, India. He joined the Siemens Research Laboratories in Erlangen, Germany in 1972. From 1976 to 1998, he was Professor and Head of the Electrical Machines and Drives Laboratory, Wuppertal University, Germany. He is presently Professor Emeritus and a Consultant. His publications include 2 invited papers in the PROCEEDINGS OF THE IEEE, 17 invited papers in IEEE Journals, and 27 single-authored IEEE Journal papers. He is the recipient of 17 Prize Paper Awards, a coauthor of seven books. He holds 33 patents. Dr. Holtz is the recipient of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society Dr. Eugene Mittelmann Achievement Award, the IEEE Industrial Applications Society Outstanding Achievement Award, the IEEE Power Electronics Society William E. Newell Field Award, the IEEE Third Millennium Medal, the Anthony J. Hornfeck Service Award, and the IEEE Lamme Gold Medal. He is a Life Fellow of the IEEE. Dr. Holtz is Past Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Industrial Electronics, Distinguished Lecturer of the IEEE Industrial Applications Society and of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society.

Date: October 14, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 5 PM to 6 PM
Venue : A1-NKN, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
* Also available at conference room in Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, and and SC Classroom at Kamand through NKN facility.


The total losses of medium voltage power semiconductor devices are dominated by switching losses. Operating at very low switching frequency is therefore mandatory. Low switching frequency can be achieved by using multilevel inverter topologies, optimal pulsewidth modulation techniques and, at very high power, by using series connected inverter circuits rather than series connected devices. The latter generate additional losses in their voltage balancing circuits. Parallel connected devices lead to higher currents, and consequently to higher losses. Using these guidelines, various inverter topologies are discussed. Optimal pulsewidth modulation can be achieved by off-line optimized pulse patterns, combined with online optimization at transients. An alternative approach is predictive control which is presently attracting the interest of many researchers. A predictive algorithm directly generates the firing pulses of the inverter as part of a closed loop current control system, thus eliminating a pulsewidth modulator. A gate pulse is generated whenever a predefined current error is exceeded. That error is computed as the difference between reference and actual current space vector. The next switching state is then determined such that maximum time elapses until the error vector exceeds its limit again. This minimizes the switching frequency and also the switching losses. Overmodulation and a smooth transition to full-wave operation produces maximum inverter output voltage. The error vector is represented here in a rotor field oriented coordinate system and different error magnitudes are permitted in the respective axes.

Realizing Strategic Advantages through Competitive Value Components of Technology
Speaker: Prof. L. S. Ganesh, Professor

Dr. L. S. Ganesh is currently working as professor at IIT Madras in Department of Management Studies. Dr. Ganesh received his Ph.D. degree from IIT Madras in 1986. He worked as an Assistant Professor in the Education Management Sector at the Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Bangalore, during 1986-87. He served as the Head of the Department of Management Studies at IIT Madras from July 2004 till July 2008. He also coordinated the establishment of strategic academic relationships through MoUs between IIT Madras and leading national and multinational institutions and business organizations. Prof. Ganesh served as key member of some national-level projects sponsored by ISRO and MHRD, and also of international projects concerning Integrated Coastal Zone Management sponsored by the World Bank and the UNDP. Dr. Ganesh has published extensively in International Journals.

Date: August 30, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 5 PM to 6 PM
Venue : A1-NKN, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
* Also available at conference room in Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, through NKN facility.


The talk's focus is on India's competitive capabilities in global markets, particularly those dealing with Technology. Strategic Advantages enable a country to enjoy market success, or even dominance, in the long-term. In our contemporary world, Technology is the key to achieve Strategic Advantages in global markets. The basic types of Strategic Advantages obtained and enjoyed through the relevant Technologies – not just through their market perception (more dominant in the short-term) but in their experienced reality (more valuable for the long-term) – are all ultimately based on the fundamental principle of Value Differentiation. Cost Leadership, Unique or Distinctive Functionalities, Value for Money, Market Entry Timing, Market Niche Choices, Strategic Alliances, etc., or any combination of these, which are widely discussed in the literature, are all specific modes and manifestations of Value Differentiation. For realizing competitive advantages we must carefully choose and understand the Markets we wish to compete in and the Value needs of Customers in those Markets. Concurrently, in the larger context of different basic human necessities, viz., safety and security, health and wellness, education, housing, clothing, communication, transportation, entertainment, adventure, etc., we must identify the scope for strategic advantages that can be realized through Technologies. A deeper understanding of Value will then enable us to correctly identify the competitive components embedded in Technologies that we must imagine, conceive, develop and sell successfully in global markets through systematic, effective R&D and Product management practices.

New Generation Microfluidic Devices: Towards Make in India
Speaker: Prof. Suman Chakraborty

Dr. Suman Chakraborty is currently a Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department of the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, India, and Indian National Academy of Engineering Chair Professor. He has been awarded the Santi Swaroop Bhatnagar Prize in the year 2013. He has been elected as a Fellow of ASME, Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences (FASc), Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Science (FNASc), Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering (FNAE), recipient of the Indo-US Research Fellowship, Scopus Young Scientist Award for high citation of his research in scientific/technical Journals, and Young Scientist/ Young Engineer Awards from various National Academies of Science and Engineering. He has also been an Alexander von Humboldt Fellow, and a visiting Professor at the Stanford University. He has 300+ Journal publications.

Date: April 01, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 4 PM to 5 PM
*Venue : A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.


Traditionally, Engineering was considered to be compartmentalised, with super-specialised branches. However, with the advent in time, Engineering has become more interdisciplinary, involving a fusion with physics, chemistry, mathematics, and biological sciences. In this talk, the speaker will discuss on some emerging facets of engineering research in general, and some related activities of his research group in particular. These activities include topics in microfluidics and nanofluidics in general, with particular emphasis to healthcare and energy related applications. It is envisaged that although some of these new technologies are only in the nascent stage and confined in the laboratory scale at this stage, they will be dominating the realm of technology development and futuristic grand challenges in the years to come.

The Problem of Human Origins
Speaker: Prof. Vinayak Eswaran

Prof. Eswaran is currently working as Dean Faculty at IIT Hyderabad. He had served at IIT Kanpur in Mechanical Engineering Department before moving to IIT Hyderabad. He has earned B.Tech from IIT Kanpur and PhD from State University of New York at Stony Brook, U.S.A during 1980 to 1985 and PDF from Cornell University, Ithaca, U.S.A., during 1985 to 1987. He was also visiting Assistant Professor at State University of New York at Stony Brook, U.S.A. during 1987 to 1988. He joined IIT Kanpur in 1988 as Assistant Professor. He has more than 26 years of experience in academics and research. He is Fellow, Indian National Academy of Engineering and had Fulbright Teaching Fellowship in 2002-2003. He has worked in many diversified fields. One of his most cited work is in Anthropology.

Date: March 08, 2016 (Tuesday)
Time: 5 PM to 6 PM
*Venue : A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.


Ever since Charles Darwin published his seminal book, “On the Origin of Species by means of Natural selection” in 1859 the question has been asked how humans evolved. Over the last 150 years, the picture of human evolution has become increasingly clear, with its origin being in Africa some 2.5 million years ago, starting with an ape-like species called the Australopithecines (“Southern Ape”), and evolving through many stages of the genus Homo (“Man”) till our own species called Homo sapiens (“Intelligent Man”). The last stage of this evolution, which involved the disappearance of archaic human types like the Neanderthals, is still a subject of much controversy.

Who Am I?
Speaker: Prof. C. Pandurangan

Prof. C. Pandu Rangan is a faculty of Dept. of CSE at IIT Madras for past 33 years. He holds a Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics (CS) from Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Prof. Pandu Rangan specializes in algorithms, data structures, discrete mathematics, and cryptology. He has more than 200 publications to his credit in various national and international journals. Prof. C. Pandu Rangan has received several awards and honors and guided several Master¹s and Ph.D. students as well as over a hundred B. Tech student projects. He has additionally supervised many sponsored projects funded by various government bodies and industries.

Date: Oct 21, 2015 (Wednesday)
Time: 5 PM to 6 PM
*Venue : A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
*Also available at the conference room of Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, through NKN facility.


We are in a connected world but the connection is insecure. We want to communicate with each other but we are poles apart. Finally we want to exchange information but no one else should know on the same. The insecurity in the network allows one to impersonate as someone else and this calls for addressing a fundamental issue in a communication network. How do I know I am talking to intended person? Equivalently, how do I convince the other party that I am indeed the person I am claiming the one to be .... In sum, in remote communications, identification of the parties are as important as the messages that are communicated. Our focus is on identification or establishing the identity of an entity. So, there are Provers and Verifiers. One of the basic concerns of Prover is that his act of convincing Verifier should not enable the Verifier to impersonate as Prover to a third party!! How do we address this issue? One of the ingenious, award winning solutions devised for the above conundrum is called "Zero Knowledge protocols". This talk aims to explain this concept to a broader class of audience.

Lightning and Ball Lightning
Speaker: Dr. Ravindra Arora

Dr. Ravindra Arora obtained his Doctor- Ingenieur degree in Electrical Engineering from Technical University, Dresden, Germany in 1973. Dr. Arora worked as member of the faculty with Department of Electrical Engineering at Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur from 1974 to 2008. His field of research has been ‘High Voltage Insulation and Lightning’. Besides journal articles, Dr. Arora has also authored books in this topic. During his illustrious career Dr. Arora established a unique High Voltage Laboratory at IIT Kanpur where he conducted practical research work for over forty M. Tech and two PhD theses and a large number of B. Tech projects besides several projects. He is currently a Visiting Professor at IIT Jodhpur.

Date: Sep 10, 2015 (Thursday)
Time: 5 PM to 6 PM
*Venue : A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
*Also available at the conference room of Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, through NKN facility.


The spectacular splendour of lightning becomes an hazard of nature at times. The phenomenon, as old as this earth, is common in other planets of the universe too. It has always been attracting scientists, especially the physicists, all over the world to study, understand and evolve methods to tame this natural phenomenon in order to overcome its harmful effects. The development and propagation of lightning discharge and the mechanism of every damage caused by lightning is unfortunately still not well understood hence not thoroughly explained. This presentation attempts to describe the mechanism of the development of lightning as studied and understood by the investigations made in high voltage engineering laboratories. It explains the preference of locations for the lightning to strike upon and the types of damage it can cause depending upon the location and the situation. Methods of protection from lightning are also explained. Ball Lightning, a phenomenon related to lightning but not known very widely, is described. Case analyses of the incidents of lightning strikes and ball lightning investigated by the author are presented.

Nanoscale electronics and mechanics with one atom thick graphene
Speaker: Dr. Mandar M. Deshmukh

Mandar Deshmukh has been a faculty member at Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, in Mumbai, since January 2006 in the Department of Condensed Matter Physics and Materials Science and is currently an associate professor. Before coming to TIFR he was a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard University in US. Prior to that he got his PhD in Physics from Cornell University in US. He was an undergraduate student at IIT Bombay and graduated from IIT with a BTech in Engineering Physics. He has received the B. M. Birla Science Prize in Physics, IBM Faculty Award, Swarnajayanthi Fellowship and is a TWAS Young Affiliate. His current field of research involves looking at nanoscale phenomenon in nanowires and graphene.

Date:May 25, 2015 (Monday)
Time: 5 PM to 6 PM
*Venue : A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
*Also available at the conference room of Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, through NKN facility.


Graphene is an exciting material for science and also for exploring potential technological applications. I will discuss the properties that make this 2D material interesting – focusing on the electronic and elastic properties. Following a broad introduction I will briefly discuss two areas of research that exemplify aspects of interest to us. In the first example I will describe how making superlattice with graphene provides an opportunity to controllably modify graphene’s electronic.
properties. In the second example I will show how nanoscale drums of graphene are used to study mechanics and elastic properties of graphene membrane. These nanoscale electromechanical devices provide opportunities to make sensitive sensors.

Nanoscale electronics and mechanics with one atom thick graphene
Speaker: Dr. Saikat Chakarabarti, IIT Kanpur

Dr. S. Chakrabarti completed his PhD in Electrical Engineering from Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada in 2006. Before completing PhD, he worked in Asea Brown Boveri (ABB) Limited, India, and Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, India. After completing PhD, he worked as a Special Scientist in University of Cyprus, Cyprus, and first as a Research Associate and then as a Lecturer in Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia. Since 2009, he has been working in the Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India, where he is currently an Associate Professor, and holds the position of P. K. Kelkar Young Faculty Research Fellow.
His research interests are in the areas of Power system dynamics and stability, application of synchronized measurement technology to power systems, state estimation, and reliability. Currently, he is the Chairperson of the IEEE PES and IAS, Uttar Pradesh section, India. He is a senior member of IEEE, USA.

Date: April 10th, 2015 (Friday)
Time: 12:00 Noon - 01:00 PM
Venue: NKN Room, A1, IIT Mandi, Kamand Campus (and Mandi conf. hall through NKN)


Conventional power grids are being transformed into ‘smart grids’ with the help of advanced power engineering, widespread use of communication technology, and advanced IT infrastructure. The talk will give an introduction to the basic concepts of smart grid, its various constituent domains, and the requirements for making the existing grid smarter. The discussion will involve various sub-systems of the power system, starting from the generation to the consumers, and also the electricity market, operators, and service providers. Technological advancements in various fields of engineering, including measurement and instrumentation, power systems and power electronics, material science, and control systems are the backbones of a smart grid. The social, economic, and technical characteristics of the smart grid will pose significant regulatory challenges. The talk will address some of these issues. The smart grid initiatives in India will also be highlighted.

Structural Health Monitoring: A Novel Approach to Safety of High Technology Structures
Speaker: Prof. B. Dattaguru

Prof. B. Dattaguru is a Padma Shri Awardee for Science & Engineering for the year 2005. He holds a Ph.D., M.E. (Aero) and B.E. (Electrical), all degrees from Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Prof. B. Dattaguru specializes in Theory of Elasticity, Aircraft Structures, Aging Structures, Life Extension Methods, Fracture Mechanics, Finite Element Methods (linear and non-linear), Composites, Smart Structures, Aircraft and Missile Design, Experimental Stress Analysis and Non-destructive Testing.

Date: May 20, 2015 (Wednesday)
Time: 5 PM to 6 PM
Venue: A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
Also available at the conference room of Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, through NKN facility.


Safety critical structures such as those in aerospace, nuclear, automobile and bridges need continuous monitoring to ensure no damages initiate and propagate leading to catastrophic failures. Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) is the field which emerged from this crucial requirement and is highly inter-disciplinary. The developments in Micro- and Nano sensors/systems made such an approach feasible. The field needs expertise in computational methods, novel materials, non-destructive testing (NDT), sensors and computer science. In aerospace vehicles the measurements are carried out in flight by HUMS (Health Usage Monitoring System) and the fatigue damage is estimated at critical locations. Off-line SHM primarily depends on NDT for damage detection and tolerance limits to assess the health of the structure. This activity is of considerable importance to maintenance and repair operators. Thus the SHM activity can be viewed as comprising of diagnosis and prognosis. Diagnosis deals with damage detection and prognosis analysis depends on damage growth. The design philosophy used for several decades based on Fracture Mechanics, Fatigue and Damage Tolerance is now leading to SHM/IVHM (Integrated Vehicle Health Monitoring). Besides describing the broad scope of this field, the lecture also presents some recent work on non-linear prognosis analysis of cracks in fastener structural joints.

Smart Power Grid: Implementation and Challenges
Speaker: Dr. Saikat Chakarabarti, IIT Kanpur

Dr. S. Chakrabarti completed his PhD in Electrical Engineering from Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada in 2006. Before completing PhD, he worked in Asea Brown Boveri (ABB) Limited, India, and Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, India. After completing PhD, he worked as a Special Scientist in University of Cyprus, Cyprus, and first as a Research Associate and then as a Lecturer in Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia. Since 2009, he has been working in the Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India, where he is currently an Associate Professor, and holds the position of P. K. Kelkar Young Faculty Research Fellow.
His research interests are in the areas of Power system dynamics and stability, application of synchronized measurement technology to power systems, state estimation, and reliability. Currently, he is the Chairperson of the IEEE PES and IAS, Uttar Pradesh section, India. He is a senior member of IEEE, USA.

Date: April 10th, 2015 (Friday)
Time: 12:00 Noon - 01:00 PM
Venue: NKN Room, A1, IIT Mandi, Kamand Campus (and Mandi conf. hall through NKN)


Conventional power grids are being transformed into ‘smart grids’ with the help of advanced power engineering, widespread use of communication technology, and advanced IT infrastructure. The talk will give an introduction to the basic concepts of smart grid, its various constituent domains, and the requirements for making the existing grid smarter. The discussion will involve various sub-systems of the power system, starting from the generation to the consumers, and also the electricity market, operators, and service providers. Technological advancements in various fields of engineering, including measurement and instrumentation, power systems and power electronics, material science, and control systems are the backbones of a smart grid. The social, economic, and technical characteristics of the smart grid will pose significant regulatory challenges. The talk will address some of these issues. The smart grid initiatives in India will also be highlighted.

Nature’s Engineering Behind a Cricket’s Love Song: The Orchestra of Natural Micro-Mechanical Transducers
Speaker: Prof. Rudra Pratap

Dr Rudra Pratap is a Professor and the Chairperson of the Centre for Nano Science and Engineering (CeNSE), and an associate faculty of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Dr Rudra Pratap specializes in MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems) and NEMS (Nano-Electro-Mechanical Systems) design. Apart from MEMS and NEMS, his research interests include mechanobiology, sensor technology, and computational mechanics. Dr. Rudra Pratap holds a Ph.D. degree from Cornell University, USA and a B. Tech. from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India. He is a Fellow of the National Academy of Engineering.

Date: March 28, 2015 (Saturday)
Time:12 noon to 1 pm
Venue: A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
Also available at the conference room of Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, through NKN facility.


The all-too-familiar chirp of field crickets is actually a song that male crickets sing to attract mates. Surprisingly, this rather loud song is not produced by vocal chords of crickets; it is produced by very well coordinated motions and vibrations of an ensemble of clever natural transducers. These purely mechanical transducers with critical micro-scale features must work with clockwork precision to produce songs with a few KHz central frequency in a specific frequency band allocated to the particular species (yes, crickets have spectrum allocation too!). The song production unit uses another transducer as a frequency multiplier to convert the slow wing beat frequency into a high frequency impulse train. The impulse train, in turn, forces the harp—a thin triangular part of the wing—into resonance, modulating the subsequent motion into a beat pattern to produce the characteristic song. In this talk, I will unravel the orchestra of the transducers behind the song production that we have been studying for several years. Our study involves a careful finite element model of the harp, measurement of its material properties using sophisticated experimental techniques such as nano-indentation and atomic force microscopy, multiple simulation runs to get the vibration response of the harp, and finally, a comparison of the sound produced by the model with the sound recorded from the field crickets. The uncanny resemblance of the sound and the comparison of the frequency content provide enough evidence for trusting the model. We subsequently use our model to discover a scaling law that crickets seem to use for “spectrum allocation”. The scaling law predicts geometric scaling for the harp structure that the evolutionary processes seem to have used for crickets of different sizes in order to enable them to produce songs with frequencies unique to the species. The underlying design principles for low frequency driving, frequency multiplier, and vibration amplifier have bearing on micro scale devices and are likely to be used for development of efficient MEMS loudspeakers.

Engineering Education – Curriculum, Teaching and Learning
Speaker: Prof. Subrata Ray,
School of Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology Mandi, HP-175001

Prof. Subrata Ray is serving as a Distinguished visiting Professor at Indian Institute of Technology Mandi (H. P) in the School of Engineering. Before joining Indian Institute of Technology Mandi, he was a Professor at Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee in the department of metallurgy and materials engineering. He did his Bachelors in metallurgical engineering from Bengal Engineering College, Calcutta University, India in the year 1968. He did his M. Tech. in Physical Metallurgy from Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur in the year 1970. After obtaining his PhD. Degree in Alloy theory from Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur in the year 1976, he joined University of Roorkee. In the year 1999, he became Professor and Head, Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, University of Roorkee. Apart from teaching responsibilities he also served as Dean (Administration) and Dean(SRIC). Till so far he had guided 30 Master and 40 Doctoral Dissertations on different novel topics.

Date: March 04, 2015 (Wednesday)
Time:4.00 p.m. (High tea will be served at 5:00 p.m.)
Venue: A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.


The Institutional education in engineering started from the requirements of firmly establishing colonial rule of the British Government with all its economic benefits. After independence, IITs were set-up to lead postgraduate education and research in engineering but it could not find time from ‘global’ problems to address either national or local problems of Indian society. Twenty first century has brought significant changes in the industrial scenario demanding new types of engineers, who should be ‘smart creative’. The curriculum needs to evolve to incorporate such elements as required in the making of suchengineers. The delivery of the curriculum through teaching must result in appropriate transformational learning so that a students may become ‘smart creative’.

Super-resolution Microscopy: A New Vision of Nano World
Speaker: Dr. Chayan Kanti Nandi,
School of Basic Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Mandi, HP-175001

Immediately after completing his PhD from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur in 2006, Dr. Chayan Kanti Nandi moved to Geothe University Frankfurt am Main Germany as a prestigious Alexander Von Humboldt Fellow. After spending three years he moved to Princeton University USA to gather more experience in multidisciplinary research in Chemistry, Physics and Biology. After spending a year at Princeton, Dr. Nandi joined as an assistant professor in 2010 in the school of basic sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Mandi. His current research includes the advancement in the single molecule techniques, especially Super Resolution Microscopy, single molecule Forster Resonance Energy Transfer and Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy for understanding the real time dynamics of the nano scale cellular components.

Date: November 11, 2014 (Tuesday)
Time:4.00 - 5.00 p.m.
Venue: A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi (Also available at the conference room of Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, through NKN facility)


The Nobel Prize in Chemistry (2014) was awarded to Erik Betzig, Stefan W. Hell and W. E. Moerner for their pioneering work on single-molecule imaging and super-resolution fluorescence microscopy. 1-3 Fluorescence microscopy, before this breakthrough invention, was just limited to the diffraction limited optical barrier, even for nm-sized objects. This development is expected to revolutionize, especially in biology and medicine, the quantitative dynamic description of the cellular components that define the phenotypes of all life forms. In this seminar, we will provide a general understanding of the principle of super-resolution microscopy and its real-world application.

    • Dickson, R.M., Cubitt, A.B., Tsien, R.Y. & Moerner, W.E. Nature 388, 355-358 (1997).
    • Klar,T.A., Jakobs, S., Dyba, M., Egner, A & Hell, S.W. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 97, 8206-8210 (2000).
    • Betzig E, et al Science 313, 1642-1645 (2006).
Institute Colloquium Notice: Brain Machine Interface
Speaker: Professor Govindan Rangarajan

Prof. Govindan Rangarajan obtained his PhD from University of Maryland, College Park, USA. He then worked at the Lawrence Berkeley Lab, University of California, Berkeley before returning to India in 1992. He is currently a Professor of Mathematics and Chairman of the Division of Interdisciplinary Research at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. His research interests include nonlinear dynamics and chaos, time series analysis and brain machine interface. He is a J. C. Bose National Fellow. He is also a Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences, India. He was knighted by the Government of France: Knight (Chevalier) of the Order of Palms. He was also a Homi Bhabha Fellow.

Date: October 28, 2014 (Tuesday)
Time: 4.00 - 5.00 p.m. (High tea will be served at 6:00 p.m.)
Venue: A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi. Also available at the conference room of Mandi Campus,IIT Mandi, through NKN facility


In this popular talk, we will give an overview of the exciting new field of Brain Machine Interfaces (BMI). The goal of BMIs is to "read" the mind of a person albeit in a limited sense. For example, by recording signals from the brain, one attempts to infer what kind of motor action a person wishes to perform. This research is interdisciplinary in nature and involves neuroscience, mathematics, robotics, signal processing etc. This research can be applied to help paralyzed patients, amputees and others.

Topic: Functional Nanocoatings: A Multi-Disciplinary Approach for Cost-Effective Large Scale Industrial Manufacturing with Low Environmental Impact Abstract
Speaker: Professor Jas Pal Badyal

Prof Jas pal Badyal, is a Professor in department of chemistry at Durham University UK. He did his Ph.D. in surface science from Cambridge University from 1985‐1988. From 1988‐1989 he worked as a junior research fellow in King’s college from where he moved to the post of lecturer in Durham University till 1996. He became a full professor in Durham university in the year 1996. He had 38 patents on his name and is the main author of 165 peer reviewed research publications. He is one of the Plenary/invited speakers in 67 international conferences. Prof J. P. Badyal is one of the member of editor advisory board of several international journals which includes many high impact journals like Plasmas and polymers, Journal of Adhesion Science and Technology, Plasma Chemistry and many more. He has many prominent awards/Prizes to his credit some of them includes Harrison Prize, Burch Prize, EPSRC Advanced Fellowship Research and many more. He is the founder of three companies which provide surface nano coatings for tailoring of surface properties of many commercial products and nano coating solutions.

Date: Sept 22, 2014 (Monday)
Time: 5:00-6:00 p.m. (High tea will be served at 6:00 p.m.)
Venue: A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi. Also available at the conference room of Mandi Campus through NKN facility


In our everyday 3‐dimensional world, we are continuously interacting with 2‐dimensional surfaces, and they play a major role in our lives. For example, the cleanliness of optical lenses, the feel of fabrics, the resistance of biomedical implants towards bacteria, the speed of computer hard disks, automotive exhaust catalysts, self‐ cleaning windows, and even the wear of car brake pads are all governed by their surface functionality. The worldwide market for functional surfaces exceeds $100 billion per annum (US Department of Energy), and a key driver is the added value that can be imparted to commercial products by tailoring their surface properties (quite often by just changing the few outermost atomic layers – high value / low volume manufacturing). In order to generate such surfaces, there exists no shortage of methods, however such techniques suffer from drawbacks including substrate‐specificity (cannot be easily adapted to different materials or geometries) and environmental concerns associated with the utilization of solvents, strong acid / base media, and heat. An innovative scientific solution will be described which addresses these issues and yields remarkable levels of surface functionality at low cost with negligible waste. This has entailed building a multi‐disciplinary approach (physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, and computer science) in order to develop a wide spectrum of targeted end‐user applications; these include liquid‐repellency, rewritability, cell tissue engineering, adhesion, gas barrier, tribology, anti‐fouling, opto‐chirality, catalysis, inkjet printing, antibacterial, drug release, water purification, DNA computers, and nano‐actuation. This fundamental research has led to the filing of 38 patent families and the establishment of 3 start‐up companies (Surface Innovations Ltd, Dow Corning Plasma Ltd, and P2i Ltd – winner of 2012 International Business Award for 'Most Innovative Company in Europe').

Topic: Closer Look at Smaller Things; From Nucleation to Nanomanufacturing of Functional Materials
Speaker: Dr. Viswanath Balakrishnan

Dr.Viswanath Balakrishnan, is an assistant professor at school of engineering, IIT- Mandi. He did his PhD investigating the atomistic growth mechanism of functional nanostructures using Transmission electron microscopy (TEM) at Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore in 2008. He was a senior research associate in IISc, Bangalore from 2008-2009 and studied the growth and nano-mechanical behavior of bio-minerals. Later, he joined as post-doctoral fellow (2009 - 2013) at Harvard University and carried out in-situ phase transition studies of functional oxide thin films with major components of electrical, mechanical and electron microscopy. Afterwards, he joined Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) as Post-Doctoral Associate (2013-2014) and explored the CVD growth of carbon nanotube (CNT) and Graphene. He was/is active user at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) and carried out in situ TEM probing CNT growth. His research interests revolve around growth, advanced electron microscopy and mechanical behavior of functional materials/thin films.

Date: May 13, 2014 (Tuesday)
Time: 5:00-6:00 PM
Venue: A1-NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
*Also available at the conference room of Mandi campus through NKN facility.


Doesn't seeing things make it easier to find them? This is especially true for scientific observation of materials through modern electron microscopes. Many of the scientific and technological developments in the area of materials science and nanotechnology are enabled by electron microscopy. The talk will revolve around controlling the growth, microstructure and strain engineering of functional nanostructures with aid of ex-situ and in situ electron microscopy. Ex situ TEM findings related to layer by layer growth, morphology transition and phase transition will be discussed with case studies on large variety of functional materials in the form of nanostructures and thin films.

Further, in situ electron microscopy to capture thermally driven dynamic phenomenon such as structural phase transition, stress relaxation in thin films, instabilities in nanoparticle superlattice structures, CNT growth dynamics in real time will be highlighted. In this regard, the speaker will briefly discuss how in situ TEM technique can be used to visualize and quantify actuation in nanostructures that undergo structural transitions by Fresnel contrast imaging of electron transparent cantilevers with heating holder.

Finally, the speaker will present aberration corrected environmental TEM observations to answer some of the fundamental questions related to the growth of carbon nanotube forest.

Topic: Phasor Measurement Unit (PMU) Applications for Real Time Monitoring of Power Systems
Speaker: Dr. Amit Jain

Dr. Amit Jain graduated in Electrical Engineering with masters and Ph.D. from Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, India. He was working in Alstom on the power SCADA systems and was part of the team working for the EMS/SCADA implementation for the Northern Regional Grid of India. Later on he worked in South Korea in 2002 as a Post-doctoral researcher in the Brain Korea 21 project team of Chungbuk National University. He got prestigious Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) Post Doctoral Fellowship in Japan and was researcher there for more than 4 years. Later on he joined IIIT Hyderabad and worked as head of Power Systems Research Center. Currently he is Joint Director at Central Power Research Institute, India and heading Smart Power & energy System group there. His fields of research interest are smart grid, SCADA/EMS/DMS, real time monitoring and control, load forecasting, artificial intelligence applications, PMU applications, state estimation, power system planning and economics, and renewable energy. He is a member of IEEE and served in various capacities including Chairman of Joint chapter of PES/IAS/PELS for IEEE Hyderabad section. He won IEEE Power & Energy Hyderabad Chapter Outstanding Power Engineer award 2013.

Date: April 25th, 2014 (Friday)
Time: 05:00 PM -06:00 PM
Venue: NKN Room, A1, IIT Mandi, Kamand Campus


Real Time Monitoring of Power Systems is very important for reliable and secure operation of Power Systems. The ever increasing power demand and expansion in power systems as well as new electricity market and regulatory pressures have made the power system operation quite complex now than the earlier days and real time monitoring has now become one of the most crucial aspects for reliable, economic and secure power system operation and control.

The advancements in hardware and software technologies are bringing significant changes in the operation practices of power systems and real time monitoring of power system has also been tremendously benefited with these advancements like implementation of Phasor Measurement Units (PMUs). In this talk, I will discuss about real time monitoring of Power Systems and the application of PMUs in real time monitoring.

Topic: Introduction to Black-Hole Thermodynamics - Black-Hole as a
Thermodynamics Dissipative Structure /Self-Organization

Speaker: Prof. Shripad P. Mahulikar

Prof. Shripad P. Mahulikar joined the School of Eng. as Professor on deputation, from IIT Bombay Aerospace Dept. in Jun’2013. He obtained B.Tech. & M.Tech. by Research degrees in Aerospace Eng. from IIT Bombay, in 1991 & 1992, respectively. During his education at IIT Bombay, he was a recipient of NCERT’s National Talent Scholarship & Defense Research & Development Organization’s (DRDO) scholarship. He then joined DRDO & worked for 4 yrs. as Scientist, towards the completion of his scholarship bond period. Thereafter, he migrated to Australia & worked briefly as Research Associate in ANU Canberra on a joint project with NTU Singapore. He obtained PhD in Micro-Convective Flow from NTU Singapore in Aug'1999 & joined IIT Bombay (Aerospace Dept.) as Assist. Professor in Jan'2000. He was promoted to Full Professor of Aerospace Eng. in IIT Bombay in Mar'2009. Prof. Mahulikar received the prestigious A. von Humboldt Fellowship thrice (2003, 2007, & 2009), in TU Hamburg, Germany; the 3rd was on re-invitation directly from the Foundation. He received the Outstanding Reviewer Award for ASME Journal of Heat Transfer in 2007. In 2011, he was appointed as DFG sponsored Mercator Chair Professor (Visiting) in TU Hamburg, Germany, on sabbatical from IIT Bombay till Jan’2013. His research interests include, Non-Equilibrium Thermodynamics of Self-Organization, Infrared Stealth of Aircraft, & Micro-Convective Flows.

Date: April 23, 2014 (Wednesday)
Time: 5:00-6:00 p.m.
Venue: New NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
*Also available at the Mandi campus through NKN facility.


The existence of astrophysical black-holes as an end-state for massive stars is a striking finding of Einstein’s theory of general relativity. This lecture introduces basic concepts that characterize black-holes, viz. their Schwarzschild Radius, Event Horizon, Hawking Radiance, etc.. The formation of black-holes through gravitational collapse by overcoming of the quantum degeneracy pressures will be discussed. The types and classification of black-holes based on their mass and energy content will be introduced. The Four Laws of Black-Hole Mechanics formulated by Bardeen et al. (1973) & their similarity with the 4 Laws of Thermodynamics will be enunciated. Thereafter, thermodynamic (energy & entropy) analysis of the simplest Schwarzschild black-hole fed by the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation (CMBR) will be introduced (Mahulikar & Herwig, 2012, 2013). The lecture will finally give a glimpse of the current research on this topic at IIT-Mandi, on the proposed new relation between black-hole’s negentropy and its event horizon (Mahulikar, 2014).

  • Bardeen, J.M., Carter, B., Hawking, S.W., 1973, The four laws of black hole mechanics, Communications in Mathematical Physics, 31(2), 161-170.
  • Mahulikar, S.P., Herwig, H., 2012, Exact solution for energy analysis of Schwarzschild black-hole fed by CMBR, Astrophysics & Space Science, 341(2), 417-420.
  • Mahulikar, S.P., Herwig, H., 2013, Thermodynamic analysis of a Schwarzschild black-hole fed by cosmic microwave background radiation, European Physical Journal C: Particles & Fields, 73(1), art. no. 2292 (8 pp.).
  • Mahulikar, S.P., 2014, The negentropy and event horizon of black-hole as a thermodynamic dissipative structure, under review.
Topic: Novel non-Chemically Amplified (n-CARs) Negative Tone Resists for
EUVL: Moores’ Law & Next Generation IC Technology

Speaker: Dr. Vikram Singh

Dr. Vikram Singh, Presently working as Post Doctoral Fellow on INTEL USA funded project at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)-Mandi, HP, India. He is working with Prof. Kenneth E. Gonsalves (UNCC, USA) on “Non Chemically Amplified Resists for EUVL at the 10 nm Node and Beyond”. Recently, he presented four of his research papers (one for Oral and three posters) at SPIE Advanced Lithography Symposium 2014, which was held during 23 - 27 February 2014 in San Jose, California USA. He got his Ph. D. on topic “Fabrication, Characterization and Reliability Study of HfO2 High-k Gate Dielectric for Advanced CMOS Technology” in 2012 from Electronic Science department, Kurukshetra University. He worked as CSIR- SRF at SNTG-Group, CEERI, Pilani under Dr. R. K. Nahar (Scientist). He has more than 8 years hands-on experience in semiconductor fabrication lab (CEERI-Pilani and also at CEN lab, IIT-Bombay) in leading edge thin film technology work (Wafer cleaning, PVD / CVD, Litho / Etching, EBL Implant / Diffusion Process). His area of research in Lithography technology for sub 20 nm node and its application in nano semiconductor device like quantum devices such as single electron (SET) transistor and biosensors applications, radiation reliability of high-k thin films, thin films gas sensors and rare earth nano-particles embedded MOS-structures. He has published 35 research papers in various reputed journals and conferences.

Date: April 09, 2014 (Wednesday)
Time: 4:00-5:00 p.m.
Venue: New NKN Room, Kamand Campus, IIT Mandi.
*Also available at the conference room of Mandi campus, IIT Mandi, through NKN facility.


According to ITRS-2011, one of the most prominent challenges for promoting EUVL are the requirements for improvements in resist performance like sensitivity, resolution, etch resistance and line edge roughness (LER) to fulfill the demands of high-volume production. The chemically amplified resists (CARs) can limit the ultimate minimum half pitch resolution due to acid diffusion problems and post exposure instability especially for features at 16 nm and below. For this reason, recently attention has focused on the development of non-chemically amplified resists (n-CARs) for future lithography nodes.

One such approach being investigated by us is the development of polymeric non-CA negative photoresists for sub 16 nm technology. Novel n-CAR negative resists were synthesized and characterized for EUVL applications, as they are directly sensitive to radiation without utilizing the concept of chemical amplification. The n-CARs achieved 20 and 16 nm L/2S, L/S patterns to meet the ITRS requirements. High resolution patterning of designed polymer resists was carried out using 20 KeV e-beam and EUV lithography. High resolution features at 13.5 nm obtained at BMET tool Berkeley will be presented as well as fragmentation dynamics under EUV at the Synchrotron Light Source (103.5 eV) at Campinas Sao Paulo Brazil. These new negative tone resist provide a viable path forward for designing non-chemically amplified resists that can obtain higher resolutions than current chemically amplified resists at competitive sensitivities.

Topic: India's Foreign Policy
Speaker: Ambassador (Retd.) Dinesh Kumar Jain

Ambassador (Retd.) Dinesh Kumar Jain, 61, a Mechanical Engineer by qualification, joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1975. His various assignments were in Kathmandu, Vienna (both bilateral and with the UN), Thimphu, New York (with the UN, where he also represented India on the UN Security Council), followed by Brunei Darussalam, Tanzania, Mexico, Belize, and Guatemala as Ambassador or High Commissioner. During his home assignments at MEA headquarters, he served at all various levels up to Special Secretary, dealing with Nepal, Bhutan, WANA (West Asia & North Africa), Gulf, Economic Relations, Development Partnership, and Policy Planning & Research. He was also Joint Secretary in Ministry of Commerce. He retired from the Service in 2012.

During his years in the service, his work experience was diversified in geographical terms, but with a greater focus on India's northern neighbours, commercial & economic relations, and multilateral interactions. He consistently achieved outstanding results in terms of promotion of India's bilateral relations with the countries concerned, and in particular of India's exports and economic interests. At the UN, his period in New York (1989-1992), coinciding with the end of the Cold War and the consequent global reconfiguration, and India's membership of the UN Security Council, was of particular, far-reaching significance. Academically, he topped both Meerut University for B.Sc. - possibly as the youngest graduate in the country, and later University of Roorkee (now IIT Roorkee) for B.E.

His diversified interests and hobbies span across social service, culture, history, nature, wildlife, birds, trees, reading, photography, golf, and bridge.

Date: February 25, 2014 (Tuesday)
Time: 2:30-3:30 p.m.
Venue: NKN Room, IIT Mandi, Kamand Campus.


Foreign policy is a country's policy, conceived, designed, and formulated, to safeguard and promote her national interests, in her external milieu, in the conduct of relations with other countries, bilaterally and multilaterally. It seeks to turn the external environment conducive to the country's goals, through building widest possible international cooperation. The two principal foreign policy goals are security and prosperity. Foreign policy transcends all various areas of interaction - ever on the rise.

In foreign relations, diplomacy and tact are the first line of defense, whereas force and military the last resort. In a democratic polity, the three important sources of input for foreign policy formulation are the executive and the bureaucracy, the legislature, and independent public opinion including the media.

India had an age old indigenous foreign policy tradition, but not consistently all through. The major interregnum was the British colonial rule, but the freedom movement helped revive it, led by Nehru and others, who evolved among others the non-alignment concept, to safeguard India's strategic autonomy and enlightened self-interests, aimed at helping the nation-building without distractions, and ensuring peace and security. The principal tenets of India's foreign policy towards these objectives, and to project her as an open, inclusive, and responsible member of the global community, are moored in her civilisational beliefs of peace, tolerance, and One World.

The end of the Cold war and India's economic reforms around 1990, in a new rapidly evolving international landscape, opened up new significant opportunities for India, even in the face of new and major challenges. The new situation warranting a paradigm shift in the international cooperation pattern underscored a much bigger role for a country like India in collective tackling of these challenges. The spurt in capital and trade flows was directly beneficial too. India had arrived at a most favorable juncture in her quest to develop. The developing countries now followed India's lead and the developed countries sought her counsel and cooperation. India emerged as a major voice in global decision-making and management, and as a bridge and balancing power in the emerging global strategic architecture. Repeatedly India reached out swiftly particularly to the neighbours to provide assistance, in emergencies and otherwise too. India has demonstrated her ability to contribute to regional and global peace and security, to social and economic progress, all through true democratic governance. The civil nuclear cooperation agreements concluded with USA and others in recent years was a major success of India's foreign policy, ending the long nuclear apartheid against her, but without diluting India's firm opposition against nuclear weapons on a universal basis. Today India has formal diplomatic relations with most nations, with her relations with the major powers having acquired strategic depth and self-sustaining mutuality of interest.

In her neighbourhood, India is a particular factor for stability and peace, in her effort to construct an overarching vision for the region, developing friendly and cooperative relations with all her neighbours, and creating stakes in each other's prosperity and stability, predicated on India's greater responsibility in the process as the largest country and the strongest economy in the region, while encouraging all countries to be sensitive to one another's vital concerns. Recent times have witnessed particularly significant advances in regard of these, and in meeting the challenges, with Pakistan and China, as well as with Bhutan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Maldives, Afghanistan, and Myanmar. SAARC represents India's commitment to the region's progress and socio-economic development.

Further beyond, India has pursued policies to create new cooperation opportunities and partnerships in the Asia-Pacific, West Asia, Africa, Latin America, and through new significant groupings such as BRICS. India's development cooperation and partnerships have evolved, too, extending credits, technical and other cooperation to a large number of countries, to the tune of well exceeding one billion dollar annually. International terrorism, a major threat to peace and stability, has posed particular challenge to India; India's leadership and initiatives to build more effective international cooperation against terrorism, as well as weapons of mass destruction, have scored some significant successes. India has a steadfast commitment to the UN and its objectives, playing a most active and constructive role, in various multilateral fora. In order to address the glaring deficiencies and inequities of the global governance, India has been in the vanguard for reforms, particularly of the UN and its Security Council, offering herself as a new Permanent Member, which has drawn a very wide support, even though the process is yet not near a satisfactory conclusion. Global warming and climate change are another major global concern where India's role to evolving a global consensus, on the basis of equity and fairness, has been widely welcomed. An important role of India's foreign policy remains to ensure welfare and well being of the 30-million strong Indian Diaspora, and fostering their stronger links with the mother country.

Today's world needs a new international consensus, predicated on multilateralism, democracy, and inclusive participation, tolerance, understanding and acceptance, to deal with a variety of new and complex challenges. India will continue to strive to build an enabling order, based on equity and reality. The rapid qualitative change in India's foreign policy perspectives are also a positive development for international peace and stability. India would be an indispensable player in strengthening peace, stability and prosperity everywhere.

Topic: Motile matter
Speaker: Prof. Sriram Ramaswamy

Prof. Sriram Ramaswamy is currently a Professor at the TIFR Centre for Interdisciplinary Sciences, Hyderabad (on leave from Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore).
Positions held
Aug 2012 - present: at the TIFR Centre for Interdisciplinary Sciences, Hyderabad
May 1986-present: Dept of Physics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore (currently on leave)
1983-86: postdoc at the Univ of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
PhD, Physics, Univ. of Chicago 1983
BS, Physics, Univ of Maryland
High school: The Modern School, Barakhamba Road, New Delhi
Research profile
Theoretical physicist with interests in systems far from equilibrium, soft condensed matter and biological physics. Most widely acknowledged research achievement: Active Matter -- the hydrodynamics of collections of self-propelled particles; earlier highlights include: chaos and oscillations in the viscous flow of complex fluids; sedimentation, shear flow and melting in colloids; elasticity and hydrodynamics of quasicrystals; the hydrodynamics of smectic liquid crystals
About 100 original research articles in leading journals, many very widely cited; several book chapters, pedagogical articles and conference papers
Infosys Prize for the Physical Sciences 2011
Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for the Physical Sciences 2000
and many others
Editorial Board memberships (current)
Annual Review of Condensed Matter Physics
Advances in Physics,
Journal of Statistical Mechanics: Theory and Experiment
European Physical Journal E
Soft Matter (Advisory Board)

Date: August 21, 2013 (Wednesday)
Time: 4:30-5:30 p.m.
Venue: Lecture Hall No. 208, IIT Mandi, Mandi.


I will present recent work done with students and colleagues on the collective behaviour of active particles, i.e., things that can take up and dissipate energy and, in so doing, execute directed movement. I will talk about phenomena within a cell as well at the scale of a whole cell, many cells, or many organisms. I will also present some interesting ways to imitate apparently purposive movement in lifeless particles. Along the way I will also make some general remarks about physics in biology.

Topic: Mysteries of light: from Newton to Einstein
Speaker: Prof. Satish Chand Abbi

Professor Abbi obtained his Ph D degree from Cornell University (USA) in 1971 and after five years of teaching/research assignments in the US, he returned to India to join the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi in 1976. He, along with Professor S.Chopra established the ‘Quantum Electronics Laboratory’ in 1978. A Photon Correlator was developed in this laboratory for the first time in India and work in the area of ‘Photon Correlation Spectroscopy’ was initiated. Five years later, he along with Professor K.P. Jain, established the ‘Laser Technology Research Programme’, which now houses one of the best Laser Spectroscopy Laboratories in India. The group set-up various international collaborative research programmes in Laser Spectroscopy with many groups in France, United Kingdom, Japan, and Israel.

Professor Abbi has guided 12 Ph D students and 30 MS/M Tech projects. He has published more than 70 papers in Journals of international repute. His major contributions are in areas that include: Non-linear Optics, Laser Raman and Photoluminescence Spectroscopy of Semiconductors, Laser generation of Nano-Semiconductors and their Characterization by Laser spectroscopy. This work resulted in many papers in prestigious international journals that include: Physical Review Letters (3), Physical Reviews B (10), Journal of Applied Physics (10), Applied Physics Letters and many national journals. Professor Abbi, along with Dr S A Ahmad, published a book titled ‘Non-linear Optics and Laser Spectroscopy’. Professor Abbi has held various administrative positions including: Head, Department of Physics at IIT Delhi, Coordinator of the Laser technology Research Programme, President of the India Laser Association, Director of the Science and Engineering Research Council (DST) School on Non-linear Optics and Laser spectroscopy and President of the Board of Recreational and Creative activities of Indian Institute of Technology Delhi.

Date: May 14, 2013 (Tuesday)
Time: 4:30-5:30 p.m.
Venue: Lecture Hall No. 208, IIT Mandi


What is light? How does it travel from one point to another?

How does light travel from one point to another? Mach’s Principle was the motivating idea for Einstein to develop the General Theory of Relativity. The General Theory predicts that light travelling in the Celestial space would bend while passing close to the Sun. On a terrestrial scale, light bends when passing from one medium to the other or travelling through inhomogeneous media. Is there a common principle followed in both cases? In order to explore this possibility, we develop a general discussion by asking the question that in going from one point to another, weather (a) light travels in a straight line, or (b) it chooses the shortest path, or (c) it chooses a path to reach the target point in the minimum time (Fermat's Principle).Through a description of some surprisingly simple experiments we conclude that light always chooses the shortest path as it does in outer celestial space as enunciated by Einstein. In this description, the length scales change but the time intervals remain the same as light passes from one medium to another. This is a refreshingly new way of looking at the refraction of light.

“What is light?” Is it a stream of particles called `Corpuscles' as proposed by Newton or is it a wave as described by Huygens? Once again, we depend on a very simple experiment done by almost every science high school student to conclude that light certainly does not consist of the ‘Corpuscles’ described by Newton. We consider next the Einstein’s concept that light can be considered as a stream of particles called ‘Photons’ and show that this picture is also in agreement with the experimental results of the same simple experiment. We thereby confirm the dual nature of light. The discussion leads us to a refreshingly new visualization of Nature as consisting of finite mass Newtonian particles as well as the Zero mass Boson called ‘Photon’. In this way we ascribe the discovery of the Zero of the mass scale to Satyendra Nath Bose.

We mention some more mysteries of light and conclude by discussing that incorporation of concepts and principles have the potential of generating more interest and discussion among the students than by simply enunciating the Laws of Physics and facilitating their use in problem solving.

Speaker: Prof. Jayant Vishnu Narlikar

Jayant Narlikar was born on July 19, 1938 in Kolhapur, Maharashtra and received his early education in the campus of Banaras Hindu University (BHU), where his father Vishnu Vasudeva Narlikar was Professor and Head of the Mathematics Department. His mother Sumati Narlikar was a Sanskrit scholar. After a brilliant career in school and college, Narlikar got his B.Sc. degree in 1957. He went to Cambridge for higher studies, becoming a Wrangler and Tyson Medallist in the Mathematical Tripos. He got his Cambridge degrees in mathematics: B.A.(1960), Ph.D. (1963), M.A. (1964) and Sc.D. (1976), but specialized in astronomy and astrophysics. He distinguished himself at Cambridge with the Smith’s Prize in 1962 and the Adams Prize in 1967. He later stayed on at Cambridge till 1972, as Fellow of King’s College (1963-72) and Founder Staff Member of the Institute of Theoretical Astronomy (1966-72). During this period he laid the foundations of his research work in cosmology and astrophysics in collaboration with his mentor Fred Hoyle.

Narlikar returned to India to join the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (1972-1989) where under his charge the Theoretical Astrophysics Group acquired international standing. In 1988 he was invited by the University Grants Commission as Founder Director to set up the proposed Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA). Under his direction IUCAA has acquired a world-wide reputation as a centre for excellence in teaching and research in astronomy and astrophysics. He retired from this position in 2003. He is now Emeritus Professor at IUCAA.

In 1966, Narlikar married Mangala Rajwade, a Ph.D. in mathematics. They have three daughters, Geeta, Girija and Leelavati, all of whom have opted for careers in science.

Narlikar is internationally known for his work in cosmology, in championing models alternative to the popularly believed big bang model. He was President of the Cosmology Commission of the International Astronomical Union from 1994 to 1997. His work has been on the frontiers of gravity and Mach’s Principle, quantum cosmology and action at a distance physics. He has received several national and international awards and honorary doctorates. He is a Bhatnagar awardee, as well as recipient of the M.P. Birla award, the Prix Janssen of the French Astronomical Society and an Associate of the Royal Astronomical Society of London. He is Fellow of the three national science academies as well as of the Third World Academy of Sciences. Apart from his scientific research, Narlikar has been well known as a science communicator through his books, articles, and radio/TV programmes. For these efforts, he was honoured by the UNESCO in 1996 with the Kalinga Award.

Narlikar recently broke new grounds in space research. Since 1999 he has been heading an international team in pioneering experiments designed to sample air for microorganisms in the atmosphere at heights of up to 41 km. Biological studies of the samples collected in 2001 and 2005 led to the findings of live cells and bacteria, thus opening out the intriguing possibility that the Earth is being bombarded by microorganisms some of which might have seeded life itself here.

Narlikar was decorated Padmabhushan in 1965, at the young age of 26. In 2004 he was awarded Padmavibhushan. In 2011, the Government of the State of Maharashtra gave him the State’s highest civilian honour of Maharashtra Bhushan.

Date: April 01, 2013 (Monday)
Time: 4:30-5:30 p.m.
Venue: Lecture Hall No. 208, IIT Mandi


This talk will begin by a historical introduction to the topic of cosmology describing how as a scientific discipline it has sought to emphasize facts. The present big bang cosmology, often described as the ‘standard model’ also started that way. However, of late several speculative elements have entered the subject. These, like inflation, non-baryonic matter and dark energy will be briefly described. It will be argued that the last word in the subject has not yet been said and there should be room for alternative ideas.

Topic: The Internet without IP addresses - A new approach to the Internet Architecture
Speaker: Dr. Saleem Bhatti

Saleem Bhatti is a Professor at the School of Computer Science at the University of St Andrews.
He was previously the Director of the "e-Science National Centre of Excellence on Networked Systems" at University College London (UCL), and is now the Theme Leader for the Scottish Informatics and Computer Science Alliance (SICSA) "Next Generation Internet" Theme.

His past work covers network and systems monitoring and management; network architecture; mobile systems; network security; QoS (Quality of Service); adaptive systems; and high-speed networking. He is also involved with industry in various consultancy roles in the area of networking technology and systems, including past work for OFCOM, the UK communications regulator.

Current projects include a work-in-progress for a next-generation evolution of the Internet Protocol; and the India-UK Advanced Technology Centre (IU-ATC) in Next Generation Networks, in which investigations include QoS and energy-aware systems for future networks.

Prof Bhatti holds a B.Eng (Hons), MSc, and a PhD all from University College London (UCL), UK.

More information on ILNP can be found here.

Date: 07 March, 2013 (Thursday)
Time: 4-5 P.M.
Venue: Room 1, Stable Complex, Kamand


There has been concern over many years about the growth of the Internet and the ability of the Internet Protocol to provide new functionality that was not part of its original design. For example, concerns over scalability have been related to routing table growth in the default free zone (DFZ). Additionally, users would like to have harmonised functionality, such as mobile hosts and networks, packet-level security, and multi-homing. Many of the solutions for dealing with scalability and new functionality have been designed and implemented in isolation, as engineering retro-fits to the core IP functionality, and so do not operate well when used together. We take a fresh approach to the architecture of the Internet, looking at the general concept of naming to provide scalability and harmonised functionality. This talk will introduce the Identifier Locator Network Protocol (ILNP) as a way of realising this new architectural approach. The architectural change with respect to the current Internet will be explained, as well as an outline of how the new architecture can be engineered for today's networks.

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