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Abdus Salam

Abdus Salam

 

EARLY LIFE

 

  • Abdus Salam was born in Jhang, a small town in what is now Pakistan, in 29 January 1926. His father was an official in the Department of Education in a poor farming district. His family has a long tradition of piety and learning.
  • Abdus Salam was born to Chaudhry Muhammad Hussain and Hajira Hussain, into a Punjabi Muslim family that was part of the Ahmadiyya Movement in Islam.
  • His father was an education officer in the Department of Education of Punjab State in a poor farming district.
EARLY LIFE

 

  • Salam very early established a reputation throughout the Punjab and later at the University of Cambridge for outstanding brilliance and academic achievement.
  • He soon picked up Mathematics as his concentration.Salam’s mentor and tutors wanted him to become an English teacher, but Salam decided to stick with Mathematics
  • As a fourth-year student there, he published his work on Srinivasa Ramanujan’s problems in mathematics, and took his B.A. in Mathematics in 1944.
  • While in Lahore, Abdus Salam went on to attend the graduate school of Government College University.
EDUCATION

 

  • He received his MA in Mathematics from the Government College University in 1946.That same year, he was awarded a scholarship to St John’s College, Cambridge, where he completed a BA degree with Double First-Class Honours in Mathematics and Physics in 1949.
  • In 1950, he received the Smith’s Prize from Cambridge University for the most outstanding pre-doctoral contribution to Physics.
  • He obtained a PhD degree in theoretical physics from the Cavendish Laboratory at Cambridge.
EDUCATION

 

  • His doctoral thesis titled “Developments in quantum theory of fields“ contained comprehensive and fundamental work in quantum electrodynamics.
  • By the time it was published in 1951, it had already gained him an international reputation and the Adams Prize.
  • Salam had found a solution for the renormalisation of meson theory. As he proposed the solution at the Cavendish Laboratory, Salam had attracted the attention of Bethe, Oppenheimer and Dirac.
RISING

 

  • After receiving his doctorate in 1951, Salam returned to Lahore at the Government College University as a Professor of Mathematics where he remained till 1954.
  • In 1952, he was appointed professor and Chair of the Department of Mathematics at the neighbouring University of the Punjab.
  • As a result, Riazuddin remained the only student of Salam who had the privilege to study under Salam at the undergraduate and post-graduate level in Lahore.
  • In 1953, Salam was unable to establish a research institute in Lahore, as he faced strong opposition from his peers.
RISING

 

  • In 1954, Salam took fellowship and became one of the earliest fellows of the Pakistan Academy of Sciences. As a result of 1953 Lahore riots, Salam went back to Cambridge and joined St John’s College, and took a position as a professor of mathematics in 1954.
  • In 1957, he was invited to take a chair at Imperial College, London, and he and Paul Matthews went on to set up the Theoretical Physics Department at Imperial College.
  • In 1957, Punjab University conferred Salam with an Honorary doctorate for his contribution in Particle physics.
RISING

 

  • At age 33, Salam became one of the youngest persons to be elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 1959.
  • Salam took a fellowship at the Princeton University in 1959, where he met with J. Robert Oppenheimer and to whom he presented his research work on neutrinos.
  • Oppenheimer and Salam discussed the foundation of electrodynamics, problems and their solution.
  • Early in his career, Salam made an important and significant contribution in quantum electrodynamics and quantum field theory, including its extension into particle and nuclear physics.
  • Salam later passed his work to Riazuddin, who made pioneering contributions in neutrinos. Salam introduced the massive Higgs bosons to the theory of the Standard Model, where he later predicted the existence of proton decay.
  • In 1963, Salam published his theoretical work on the vector meson. The paper introduced the interaction of vector meson, photon (vector electrodynamics), and the renormalisation of vector mesons‘.

  • In 1966, Salam carried out pioneering work on a hypothetical particle. Salam showed the possible electromagnetic interaction between the Magnetic monopole.
  • Salam provided a mathematical postulation for the interaction between the Higgs boson and the electroweak symmetry theory.
  • Physicists had believed that there were four fundamental forces of nature: the gravitational force, the strong and weak nuclear forces, and the electromagnetic force.
  • Salam had worked on the unification of these forces from 1959 with Glashow and Weinberg. While at Imperial College London, Salam successfully showed that weak nuclear forces are not really different from electromagnetic forces, and two could inter-convert.
NOBEL PRIZE

 

  • Salam had worked on the unification of these forces from 1959 with Glashow and Weinberg. While at Imperial College London, Salam successfully showed that weak nuclear forces are not really different from electromagnetic forces, and two could inter-convert.
  • Salam provided a theory that shows the unification of two fundamental forces of nature, weak nuclear forces and the electromagnetic forces, one into another.Glashow had also formulated the same work, and the theory was combined in 1966. In 1967.
  • Salam proved the electroweak unification theory mathematically, and finally published the papers. For this achievement, Salam, Glashow, and Weinberg were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1979.
RETURN PAKISTAN

 

  • Abdus Salam returned to Pakistan in 1960 to take charge of a government post that was given to him by President Field Marshal Ayub Khan.
  • Abdus Salam expanded the web of physics research and development in Pakistan by sending more than 500 scientists abroad.
  • On 16 September 1961, through an executive order, Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission was established, in which Abdus Salam served as the first director.
PAKISTAN

 

  • With the support of Abdus Salam, PAEC established PAEC Lahore Center-6, with Ishfaq Ahmad as its first director.
  • In 1967, Abdus Salam became a central and administrative figure to lead the research in both Theoretical and Particle physics With the establishment of Institute of Physics at Quaid-e-Azam University.
  • In October 1961, Salam travelled to the United States and signed a space-co-operation agreement between Pakistan and United States. In November 1961, NASA started to build a space facility – Flight Test Range – in Balochistan where Abdus Salam served as its first technical director.
PAKISTAN

 

  • In 1964, Abdus Salam was made head of Pakistan’s IAEA delegation and represented Pakistan for a decade.
  • It was due to his effort that in 1965, Canada and Pakistan signed a nuclear energy co-operation deal.
  • In 1965, with the efforts led by Abdus Salam, the United States and Pakistan signed an agreement in which the US provided Pakistan with a small research reactor.
  • In 1965, Abdus Salam and Edward Durrell Stone signed a contract for the establishment of Pakistan Institute of Nuclear Science and Technology at Nilore, Islamabad.
PAKISTAN

 

  • In 1973, Salam proposed the idea of establishing an annual college to promote scientific activities.This led to the establishment of the International Nathiagali Summer College on Physics and Contemporary Needs (INSC), where each year since 1976 scientists from all over the world come to Pakistan to interact with Pakistani scientists.
  • In 1972, the Government of Pakistan learned about the development status of the first atomic bomb completed under the Indian nuclear programme.
  • On 20 January 1972, at the Multan meeting, Bhutto orchestrated to develop the deterrence programme.
PAKISTAN

 

  • Former prime minister, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, formed a group of scientists and engineers, which was first headed by Salam.
  • In 1972, Salam, as Science Advisor to the President, had managed and participated in a secret meeting of nuclear scientists.
  • Salam remained associated with the nuclear weapons programme until the mid-1974, when he left the country after Ahmadi were declared non-Muslims by the Pakistani Parliament.
DEATH

 

  • In 1964, Salam founded the International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), Trieste, in the North-East of Italy and served as its director until 1993.In 1974, he founded International Nathiagali Summer College (INSC) to promote science in his country
  • Abdus Salam died peacefully on 21 November 1996 at the age of 70 in Oxford, England.His body was returned to Pakistan and kept in Darul Ziafat, where some 13,000 men and women visited to pay their last respects. Approximately 30,000 people attended his funeral prayers.