46th International Physics Olympiad held in Mumbai
India is hosting the 46th International Physics Olympiad (IPhO) in Mumbai from July 5 to July 12, 2015. Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (Tata Institute of Fundamental Research), the nodal centre of the country for science and mathematics Olympiads, is the organizing institute for the 46th IPhO. In all, nearly 400 students and 300 teachers and researchers from 86 countries are participating in this grand academic competition. The event is supported by the Department of Atomic Energy, the Ministry of Human Resource Development and the Department of Science & Technology of the Govt. of India.
A national academic committee chaired by the eminent physicist Prof Joseph Samuel (Raman Research Institute, Bengaluru), and consisting of some of the leading physicists and physics educationists of the country, have worked for more than a year in designing theoretical and experimental tests of exceptional quality and high difficulty level. As per the norm in the Physics Olympiad, IPhO 2015 will have two examinations of 5 hours each – one theoretical and another experimental. Both the examinations will be conducted at the Bombay Convention and Exhibition Centre, Goregaon, Mumbai. For the experimental examination all students are given exactly identical apparatus. This means that more than 400 identical copies of the experiment have been prepared. The International Board comprising of the “leaders”, who are teachers and researchers of all the 86 participating countries, will deliberate upon and approve the question papers a day in advance of the examinations.
Prof. Anwesh Mazumdar, National Coordinator, Science Olympiads in India, is the Convener of the 46th IPhO and the coordinator of the theoretical component. Dr. Rajesh Khaparde is the coordinator of the experimental component. The international board sessions will be chaired by Prof. Vijay Singh, formerly National Coordinator, Science Olympiads. The President of the International Physics Olympiad, Prof. Hans Jordens from Netherlands will be present during the entire event.
The 46th IPhO, though focused on academics, will also be an opportunity for the foreign participants to discover the cultural and socio-economic facets of our country. They will be taken on special tours to Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Nehru Centre, Nehru Planetarium, and Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalay. Educational tours to Mahindra Vehicle Manufacturers and Godrej Lock Factory are also included. The opening and closing ceremonies will also showcase Indian classical and folk dances.
The 46th IPhO will be inaugurated on Sunday, July 5, 2015 in the Homi Bhabha Auditorium, TIFR, Colaba, by Dr. R. K. Sinha, Chairman Atomic Energy Commission and Secretary, Department of Atomic Energy and Prof. Ashutosh Sharma, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. The closing award function cohosted by IIT Bombay, will be held on July 12, 2015 in the IIT Convocation Hall in Powai. Prof. R. Chidambaram, Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India will distribute the medals to the young meritorious students from all over the world.
Like the Olympic Games in sports, the Olympiads are not merely competitions. They are also great meeting grounds for the brightest young minds from all over the world. For a week in July, Mumbai will be proud to be this melting pot of future scientists of the world.