New Windows on the Sun and a Gateway to the Cosmos
Prof. Siraj Hasan (IIA, Bangalore)
Indira Gandhi Centre for National Arts (IGCNA), October 29th
The talk by Prof. Siraj Hasan focused on Alexander von Humboldt’s ideas of science as a holistic endeavour. As states in his magnum opus Kosmos, Humboldt defined the "most important aim of all physical science is this: to recognize unity in diversity”. Prof. Hasan argued that this paradigm is as relevant today as it was then. In this lecture, it was used as a way to understand the Sun, our closest star, which is a gateway to the cosmos and the source of energy that provides sustenance to our planet and humanity. Unravelling the mysteries of the complex processes continues to pose a major challenge to scientists. He thus examined some of the fundamental and deeper questions concerning the nature of the Sun, its influence on the Earth and long-term future.
Professor Siraj Hasan is currently Honorary Professor at the Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore, India. He received his Master in Physics from Delhi University in 1972 and Doctorate in Theoretical Astrophysics from the University of Oxford, U.K. He joined the faculty of the Indian Institute of Astrophysics in 1978 and was its Director from 2006 to 2012. He has been the recipient of many international fellowships that including the Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship. He is an Associate of the Harvard College Observatory and a Life Member of Clare Hall College, Cambridge. He is the Principal Investigator of India's 2-m National Large Solar Telescope (NLST) project to be built in the Jammu & Kashmir region.