FORMER HAILE SELASSIE FIRST UNIVERSITY PHYSICS CHAIRPERSON GAVE A GENEROUSU DONATION TO EPS-NA
EPS-NA Acknowledges the generous gift of $1000 from Dr. Douglas Holland. In his letter to EPS NA Dr. Holland stated
“I was very impressed with the grants the organization has given to physics students in Ethiopia.” His professional service to Africa
is exemplary and we have his permission to post his short Bio and his picture on our web page.
Dr. Douglas Holland received his PhD from the University of Arizona in 1968. From 1969 - 1973, he taught physics at Haile Selassie I University in Ethiopia, and was the Physics Department Chairman during the last three years. Dr. Holland returned to the University of Arizona for additional studies in development of nuclear fusion for energy production. He then joined the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) to work on the safety and environmental aspects of fusion energy. While working at this laboratory, he received a Fulbright grant to teach physics at the University of Zambia in Lusaka, Zambia. Returning to the US, he continued work on development of fusion energy as Head of the Fusion Safety Program at the INEL. Later, he joined the International Thermonuclear Engineering Reactor (ITER) team based in Japan, working on the design of a fusion test reactor.
After retirement from research, Dr. Holland continued his work in education. He taught physics and mathematics at Pima Community College as an adjunct professor. He spent a year at the University of Cape Coast in Ghana teaching physics. Returning to Ethiopia in 2001 - 2002, Dr. Holland taught physics and computer skills at the University of Alemaya, helping to set up the first computer lab there. Later, he traveled to China to teach technical writing at the University of Shantou.
During the years 2010 - 2012, he returned to Ethiopia to help in the establishment of Hope University College, a private institution in the outskirts of Addis Abba. Dr. Holland assisted in writing curriculum, setting up laboratories and teaching physics to the first class. Now he lives with his wife Betty Lu in Tucson Arizona.
EPS-NA 2014-15 Annual Report
EPS-NA continues to attract more members and in 2014-2015 had the highest number of members who
paid their membership fees (25 members). In 2015, 13 members including four executive members met
at The American Physical Society (APS) in San Antonio. Dr. Guebre Xabiher Tessema participated through Skype.
A group picture of the participants after the meeting.
Dr. Amy Flatten greeted the members and made some remarks. Prof. Herman Winick of Stanford University came to the meeting and introduced the plans for building an African Light Source and asked EPS-NA to help get Ethiopians be part of the Steering committee.
The meeting focused on how to engage members to be more active in the organization. Some of the suggestions include:
- Enhance the web page and provide more information and solicit members with expertise and time in web design to help.
- More presence on social media and face book was recommended. We ask all members to join the EPS-NA Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/epsna/.
- Encourage members to organize regional activities: Example mentioned was Dr. Guebre Xabiher Tessema participation in the Youth
Mentoring program in Washington. Since it has been proven to be very challenging to organize a meeting for all members, meetings of
regional representatives will help expand the activities of EPS in the US.
-Provide more opportunities to aspiring young Ethiopians in the US through networking with EPS Members.
- Declining enrollment of physics students in Physics departments in Ethiopia was raised as a concern and an opportunity for EPS-NA to get involved.
EPS-NA Award Program to Undergraduate and Graduate Physics majors in Ethiopia
EPS-NA Successfully conducted the 2014-2015 award competition in Ethiopia in collaboration with EPS-Ethiopia. EPS-NA recognized the following five undergraduate students and one graduate student for the 2014-15 EPS-NA awards.
Under graduate junior:
Yenesew Asradew Nibret,
Jamal Assen Mohammed,
Melese Nigussie Gonfa,
Bayisa Dame Dekeba,
Addis Ababa University
Addis Ababa University
Addis Ababa University
The competition was open to all physics departments in Ethiopia and the awards were given to more students outside AAU this year. The Executive Committee also decided to increase the amount of the award to $250 for each winner to have more impact on the lives of the winners.
In addition in 2014-15 EPS-NA received a request for a financial support from Mr. Shinie Shewangizaw. The support was needed to be able to pay the cost sharing to ministry of education in order to enroll in the Graduate program at AAU.
The EPS-NA- EC investigated the legitimacy of the request and received a strong letter of recommendation from Dr. Lemi. Mr. Shinie has the highest undergraduate GPA in his cohort. We believe Mr. Shinie Shewangizaw is a deserving student and has a strong potential to succeed. EPS-NA decided to make this one time award for $650 to help Mr. Shinie to enroll in the graduate program.
EPS-NA wanted to make sure the members also know who they are supporting and how membership fees are making a difference in the lives of Ethiopian Physicists in Ethiopia. We have therefore included (attached document) the profiles of each winner and their pictures and statements made by the winners.
We hope this profile will help you recognize the difference you are making in the lives of young needy Ethiopians who like us would like to succeed in life. So please send your membership fees and other donations to make more impact.
Profiles of the Awardees and their Statements
EPS-NA wanted to make sure the members also know who they are supporting and how membership fees are making a difference in the lives of Ethiopian Physicists in Ethiopia. We have therefore included below the profiles of each winner and their pictures and statements made by the winners.
YENESEW ASRADEW NIBRET- Undergraduate Junior - Debre Markos University
“I am from a humble background and my families are farmers. This award motivates me to work harder in my studies. I had passion and the talent in both physics and math in high school and decided to join the physics department at Debre Markos University”
JAMAL ASSEN MOHAMMED -Undergraduate Senior, Haramaya University
“I am from Wollo where my parents live in a low income farming. An award like this encouraged me to do more and work harder. It helps me to buy books and other materials I can use. This award encourages Ethiopians to study physics and be active in research to help solve social problems.”
MELESE NIGUSSIE GONFA- Undergraduate Senior -Haramaya University
“I grew up in Arsi with my parents in low income farming. This is the largest award I ever got and motivates me to work more and work harder. It also motivates more Ethiopians to study physics and work hard. This is a major event in my life and will not forget it.”
BAYISA DAME DEKEBA - Undergraduate Senior Addis Ababa University
“My parents are farmers in Arsi. The award motivates the interest that I have in physics, and opens the gate for my long term dream of being physicists, and lifts my moral to work harder. It creates new energy and stronger interest in pursuing physics”
HAILEMICHAEL TEKLETSADIK - Undergraduate Senior Addis Ababa University
“I am a son of famers from Northern Shoa. This award helps me to buy materials I need to conduct research for my senior project. This is indeed a great opportunity”
YOHANNES ACHENEFE- Graduate -Addis Ababa University
“I am from Debark, Gondar, where my family lives in farming. Because of this award I will be motivated to work harder in my research activities. The award also supplements the small research fund I was given by Addis Ababa University for dissertation writing and alleviate my financial burdens in my final semester.”
SPECIAL ONE TIME AWARD RECIPIENT: SHINIE SHEWANGIZAW
“Currently I teach in high school and I always miss the education environment in College. I am grateful that EPS-NA understands my desire to pursue my graduate study based on my application letter submitted to society. I would like to thank the Ethiopian physical society - North America for the financial support I got in order to pay off my cost sharing to the ministry of education. This clears my path to conduct my graduate program. I am very happy for this scholarship award”
Recommendation by Dr. Lemi “He was a hard working and the best student, and based on his achievement in the aforementioned courses I found him at the top from out of forty students. Also, I know that he finished his undergraduate study with first rank in Physics Department with very great distinction, and narrowly missed the gold medal prize of the college. I have also noticed while instructing computational physics laboratory classes that he was a well mannered person of excellent spirit in team work.”
2014 Nobel Prize in Physics Winners Announced
EPS-NA congratulates Isamu Akasaki, Hiroshi Amano, and Shuji Nakamura, recipients of the 2014 Nobel Prize in Physics "for the invention of efficient blue light-emitting diodes which has enabled bright and energy-saving white light sources."
2014 Nobel Prize in Physics:
Science news from media:
The April 2015 edition of the Physics InSight slideshow is now available at:
The slideshow includes lots of colorful slides on diverse physics careers and topics. Material in this month's edition includes:
· Profiles of Brian Cox, particle physicist, television host, and “face of science” in the UK; Kathy McCormick, subject matter expert on radiation detection for US Customs and Border protection; SPS 2014 Intern Kearns Louis-Jean, who spent a summer developing science outreach kits for local middle schools; and Sam Wurzel, CEO and co-founder of his own web-based company, Octopart, Inc.
· Data highlighting skills and knowledge most commonly used by physics BS graduates in the private sector, and initial salary information for recently graduated Physics PhDs.
· Information about valuable career resources for students, including our online Professional Guidebook, APS Job Center, and APS Webinars.
· Information on devices such as the Geiger Counter and the ATLAS detector, as well as the exciting new research involving giant ink jets, and superhydrophobic materials!
A video version of each slideshow is now available on the download for those who are using non-Windows and non-Mac platforms.
Simply right-click the button marked “Download MPEG-4” for the video version, and save it to the desired location.
Please send any questions, comments, or suggestions for physicists to feature in the slideshow to Crystal Bailey (firstname.lastname@example.org).
University of Minnesota engineers make sound loud enough to bend light on a computer chip.
The PI in the article published in nature communication is Semere Tadesse, an Ethiopian graduate student at
the department of Physics and Astronomy.
MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (11/26/2014)—During a thunderstorm, we all know that it is common to hear thunder after we see the lightning. That’s because sound travels much slower (768 miles per hour) than light (670,000,000 miles per hour).
Now, University of Minnesota engineering researchers have developed a chip on which both sound wave and light wave are generated and confined together so that the sound can very efficiently control the light. The novel device platform could improve wireless communications systems using optical fibers and ultimately be used for computation using quantum physics.
The research was recently published in Nature Communications, a leading research journal.
The University of Minnesota chip is made with a silicon base coated with a layer of aluminum nitride that conducts an electric change. Applying alternating electrical signal to the material causes the material to deform periodically and generate sound waves that grow on its surface, similar to earthquake waves that grow from the epicenter of the earthquake. The technology has been widely used in cell phones and other wireless devices as microwave filters.
“Our breakthrough is to integrate optical circuits in the same layer of material with acoustic devices in order to attain extreme strong interaction between light and sound waves,” said Mo Li, assistant professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the lead researcher of the study.
The researchers used the state-of-the-art nanofabrication technology to make arrays of electrode with a width of only 100 nanometers (.00001 centimeters) to excite sound waves at an unprecedented high frequency that is higher than 10 GHz, the frequency used for satellite communications.
“What’s remarkable is that at this high frequency, the wavelength of the sound is even shorter than the wavelength of light. This is achieved for the first time on a chip,” said Semere Tadesse, a graduate student in the University of Minnesota’s School of Physics and Astronomy and the first author of the paper. “In this unprecedented regime, sound can interact with light most efficiently to achieve high-speed modulation.”
In addition to applications in communications, researchers are pursuing quantum physics applications for the novel device. They are investigating the interaction between single photons (the fundamental quantum unit of light) and single phonons (the fundamental quantum unit of sound). The researcher plan to use sound waves as the information carriers for quantum computing.
The research is funded by National Science Foundation and Air Force Office of Scientific Research. The device was fabricated in the cleanroom at the Minnesota Nano Center at the University of Minnesota.
To read the full article, entitled “Sub-optical wavelength acoustic wave modulation of integrated photonic resonators at
microwave frequencies,” visit the Nature Communications website.
Imaging at a trillion frames per second:
Ramesh Raskar presents femto-photography, a new type of imaging so fast it visualizes the world one trillion frames per second, so detailed it shows light itself in motion.
This technology may someday be used to build cameras that can look “around” corners or see inside the body without X-rays.
Photography is about creating images by recording light. At the MIT media lab, professor Ramesh Raskar and his team members have invented a camera that can photograph light itself as it moves at, well, the speed of light.
New quantum test claims that the Heisenberg Uncertainty principle not quite right
(Source: Phys. Rev. Letter. and BBC News)
The Heisenberg uncertainty principle is in part an embodiment of the idea
that in the quantum world, the mere act of observing an event changes it.
But the idea had never been put to the test, and a team writing in
Physical Review Letters (PRL 109, 100404 (2012)) says "weak measurements" prove the rule was never quite right.
That could play havoc with "uncrackable codes" of quantum cryptography.
Quantum mechanics has since its very inception raised a great many philosophical and
metaphysical debates about the nature of nature itself.
Heisenberg's uncertainty principle, as it came to be known later,
started as an assertion that when trying to measure one aspect of a particle precisely,
say its position, experimenters would necessarily "blur out" the precision in its speed.
That raised the spectre of a physical world whose nature was,
beyond some fundamental level, unknowable.
NASA's most advanced Mars rover, Curiosity, landed on Mars August 6, 2012, as part of the Mars Science Laboratory Mission. Curiosity, hanging by ropes from a rocket backpack, touched down onto Mars after a 36-week flight. Curiosity will conduct a two-year investigation looking particularly for signs that Mars ever had conditions or ingredients favorable for microbial life.
Read more at
Curiosity's First Steps