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Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Winter Python course with Dr. Dibakar Sigdel

ANPA is offering a Winter Python course. It has limited seats and members will be given a priority. Enrollment ends 12/08/2018 after which we will announce other details. Complete the google form posted below if you are interested. 




https://docs.google.com/forms/d/129Y1dNRv9C6vJ0pPoYWUBgkljCMIAPxxY3EYT3s7jVk/viewform?fbclid=IwAR3UB1eZgs6Cls-E8kF89UvKn_b3-XEvO9dn2kikn-OUopXYFS9Lw7i8nKc  
Python logo and wordmark.svg

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https://docs.google.com/forms/d/129Y1dNRv9C6vJ0pPoYWUBgkljCMIAPxxY3EYT3s7jVk/viewform?fbclid=IwAR3UB1eZgs6Cls-E8kF89UvKn_b3-XEvO9dn2kikn-OUopXYFS9Lw7i8nKc 

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Dr. Bhoj Gautam's Talk on Structure-property relationships in organic semiconductors for photo-voltaic applications


ANPA Monthly Colloquium Series Presents
Dr. Bhoj Gautam
Fayetteville State University, Fayetteville, NC, USA


Saturday, November 17, 2018 @ 9 PM EST.

Abstract 
Organic semiconductors have been intensively studied due to their unique electronic and optical properties. Their properties – including relatively easy and inexpensive fabrication, lightweight, mechanical flexibility and compatibility with stretchability, and non-toxic processing methods – open broad prospects for their applications in light emission, energy conversion, thin-film electronics and other fields. The mechanism(s) by which charges are created by photoabsorption in these materials is different from that in the inorganic semiconductors. The charge generation process in these materials requires the donor-acceptor (D-A) heterojunction and involves the formation of neutral excitons through light absorption, exciton diffusion and formation of charge transfer (CT) complex and its subsequent splitting into “free” electrons and holes at the D-A interface. In this talk, I will discuss the charge generation process that involves these intermediate states using ultrafast pump-probe spectroscopy to understand the photoconversion process in these systems. Specifically, I will talk about the impact of polymer conformation, molecular architecture of acceptors, and nano-morphology on interface electronic properties in connection with charge separation dynamics. I will discuss how such studies have impacted the development of improved solar cell devices and the design of organic electronic device structures for inexpensive and flexible solar cell applications. 

Members will be sent the Webex link via e-mail a couple of days before the talk.



Monday, October 29, 2018

Dr. Shambhu Ghimire on 2018 Nobel Prize in Physics

A special public talk by 
Dr. Shambhu Ghimire 
on 
2018 Nobel Prize in Physics

In this talk, Dr. Ghimire talked about LASERs, how LASERs have changed human lives, what was this year's Nobel prize in physics about and what it means to us.


Dr. Ghimire is an associate staff scientist at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory in Stanford, USA. 
Hi research interests are in attosecond electron dynamics and x-ray nonlinear optics. He is a recipient of the Young Investigator award from the Office of Science, U.S. Department of Energy.
https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Shambhu_Ghimire



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The facebook live link is supplied below:

Monday, October 15, 2018

Mr. Mahendra DC, Topoligical Spintronics



ANPA Monthly Colloquium Series
We are very happy to announce start of monthly colloquium series. Our first speaker will be Mr. Mahendra D.C. from University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.
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Topological Spintronics
Mahendra DC
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
Minneapolis, MN, USA

Abstract
Topological insulators are of great interest because of their ability to convert charge-to-spin and vice versa efficiently. Topological insulators were usually grown on a single crystal susbtrate by molecular beam epitaxy. Recently, we are able to grow by sputtering technique on a silicon substrate. Our results demonstrate that the sputtered bismuth selenide can convert charge-to-spin and vice versa much more efficiently than the crystalline bismuth selenide. Quantum transport numerical simulations reveal that the quantum confinement effect present in the sputtered granular bismuth selenide is the reason for high charge-to-spin conversion. For the practical applications this high charge-to-spin conversion material can be used in the spin-orbit torque magnetoresistive random access memory and magnetoelectric spin-orbit logic as spin channel. Reference : Nature Materials 17, 800 (2018) 
Members will be sent the Webex link via e-mail a couple of days before the talk.
This event is exclusively for ANPA members only. Anyone (not only physicists but everyone!) can become a member and support us!
Wish to become a member? Visit us:  https://www.anpaglobal.org/p/membership.html

Monday, October 1, 2018

Applying to USA in 2018 - My Experience



          Shital Babu Rijal, Kansas State University.
    Graduate Student, Batch of Fall 2018
Introduction: 
Applying to US universities is physically, emotionally and financially a challenging job. You need to stay in front of your computer for lots of hours, days and months in the application process. Visiting several times to different places for courier services, attestations, recommendations, official transcripts, payments etc. is a pain in the neck. Emotionally, I know how it feels when every single person we meet asks us when we are heading to the USA?
Paying in dollars is tough. In addition to preparation and Examination fees for TOEFL, General GRE, and Physics GRE, you will have the following additional expenses:
Application Fees: $80(Average) [In some cases you can email your department to waive the application fees]
WES (World Education Service) Evaluation: $205 [Not all universities require this, but some do] [Converts % to GPA]
Sending official Test scores to University: [rates can be found through ETS and WES websites]
Courier of Official Transcripts and Documents: NRs. 1750 [DHL courier from NAEE services, Pulchowk, Lalitpur]
Preparing Official Transcripts (Attested copies in Sealed envelope): NRs. 150

Session for application:
Most of the universities in US accept students only for fall semester, i.e. August. But some universities may take for spring semester as well i.e. January, but it is not recommended to apply for spring, since they may take a very few students and availability of scholarships and assistantships can’t be ensured. So here on, I will talk based on fall semester applications.

Proficiency Tests:
As an English proficiency test, you have two options - TOEFL and IELTS. Give your preference to TOEFL because not all universities in USA accept IELTS. If you think you can’t get good scores on TOEFL then you may opt for IELTS. Also remember that these tests are valid for 2 years.

General GRE is a must for any university in US. Some universities have made the Subject GRE compulsory and some quote it as optional or highly recommended. But, if you want a sure shot at getting into US university in the first attempt, go for subject GRE. Subject GRE also helps you to rule out your lower scores (if any) in your TOEFL and GRE. So subject GRE is HIGHLY RECOMMENDED, and I personally suggest taking this exam at first, whilst you are still fresh with the subject matter. GRE scores are valid for 5 years.
Note: For all these (TOEFL, GRE, Subject GRE) you should already have a passport to schedule a test.

Selection of University:
Within this test preparation period, you can search for universities. Choose universities on the following basis:
i.              Comparison of Eligibility and University Requirements with your academic scores and expected test scores
ii.             Your interest of research
iii.             Acceptance rate
iv.            Enrollment of Nepalese students in the past years
v.             Ranking of University (USnews)

Notes:
·         You may consult with your seniors, teachers, and friends for university suggestions.
·         It is a good idea to select universities of different ranks. Don’t go only for higher rank universities based on your higher scores. Mix-up the universities between 1-50, 50-100, 100-150 and 150-200.
·         While looking up for ranks in usnews.com, it’s smarter to look for the ranking of physics department and not the overall ranking of the university.
·         Select a greater number of universities than you intend to apply because you may have to leave some universities based on your test scores or other reasons.
·         Prepare an Excel database of Universities with Name, Rank, Minimum Requirements, and Application period.

Timing for Application:
Timing is one of the important aspects while applying to US universities, as most of the universities have strict deadline. It’s better to not wait for the deadline because I have seen cases where applicants have been admitted before the deadline date for application. Most of the universities take applications between November - 15 to January - 15. And a few may have deadlines till March but again, it’s highly recommended, DO NOT WAIT FOR THE DEADLINE.

Writing a good SOP:
I believe an SOP is one of the crucial documents required for application. Statement of Purpose is a document that allows you to directly express your words to the admission committee. Here are some key points to remember about SOP:
i.              Make it simple, short and effective - Admission committee will already be tired of reading several SOP’s since many years. Try not to make it more than 2 pages.
ii.             Difficult vocabs and a lot of background won’t help you. Just express naturally as if you are talking to them. Make that look real.
iii.             Never praise yourself directly. Just mention some tasks you have done and let them decide whether you are praiseworthy. E.g. Don’t directly write that you are very talented and a hard-working student. Instead write, you loved to work in labs even in holidays and off hours. You loved helping friends to solve lab issues and other problems in class.
iv.            Always praise your past institution and faculties. Admission Committee know that they are going to take that place later.
v.             Research in depth about the university and the school you are applying to. Find out some researches and professors you like. Mention those in a paragraph and link them to any preparation you had done in your MSc such as your choice of thesis, choice of electives, participation in seminars, presentations etc.
vi.            But don’t be too specific about a topic or a field or a professor; keep yourself open to several researches being done in that university.
vii.           SOP is not written in a day. Take at least 4 to 5 days to prepare SOP. Many paragraphs can be similar for different universities but the presentation of your academics and interests should be always based on point no. v.
viii.           Give your SOP to some friends who are good in English for proof reading. This is a must.
ix.            Write in brief about your prospects after you complete PhD.
x.             Do not try to emotionally blackmail stating your problems. If you want to express that, again go the indirect way. E.g. “Because of having a poor economic background, I had to do a lot of struggle to reach here. Following my deep interest in M.Sc. Physics, I worked very hard to earn money for my livelihood. It became even more difficult when I had to support my family back in village”.  This looks very emotional but sounds creepy. This can be simply replaced by – “It was a tough time for me around my M.Sc., since I had to work in a cafĂ© daily for 10 hours and appear for Lectures and Exams in between.” This replacement indirectly lets them know how hard working you are, your poor economic backgrounds and your desire and dedication to study.

Contacting the University:
It’s not mandatory that you should contact the university. You can just apply through the graduate school. This is because it’s very rare nowadays that a professor will take you into his research group just by seeing your academics and test scores. Unless you show some proven facts such as Journal papers and publications, they’re not going to sign you up for a Research assistantship (RA). You are joining the university most often as a Teaching Assistant (TA).
But in some cases, like you want to apply an extra filter to find out which universities you apply, you can contact to the graduate chair regarding your probability of getting admission.
Or sometimes when your thesis matches to the research of a professor or you are well exposed to some papers related to the research, or you know something about the research, you can contact them. You should also remember not to email more than one professor from the same university. They are connected most of the times.
DO NOT write long emails with multiple paragraphs. You need not tell them “Nepal is poor country, I was born in village. I went to government school. I struggled to reach here etc.” These things have no impact at all. Most of the professors who are reading your emails are doing it as an extra volunteer duty. They are kind of obliged to do it as per university policy. So, they want to get that done very fast. If your email is long, they will simply read the first paragraph and stop reading the rest or delete your email right there.

§   An example of email sent to the graduate admission chair:

Subject: Application to PhD
Dear Dr. (Last Name),

I am glad to find that the researches going on University of **** match my interest to a larger extent. I have ****** score in TOEFL (R-*, W-*, L-*, S-*) and ***** score in GRE (VR-*, QA-*). My Physics GRE score is ***.  I have *** % in my Masters (and GPA as per WES evaluation is ***).
 I would be obliged if you could have a glance at my CV and suggest if I have a good chance of getting admitted to your institution. Sending application fees and official TOEFL and GRE score cost around $150, which is about half of my monthly income. Hence, I do not want to go ahead with application procedure unless I have a high probability of being selected. I am hoping for a positive response from you.
Please find attached my CV that should be helpful for preliminary evaluation.

Sincerely,
**************
(Don't forget to attach your CV)


§   An example of email sent to a professor you are interested in:

Subject: Joining your research group
Dear Dr. (Last name),

I am very glad to find that you are working on the topic of my interest. I have ****** score in TOEFL (R-*, W-*, L-*, S-*) and ***** score in GRE (VR-*, QA-*). My Physics GRE score is ***.  I have *** % in my Masters (and GPA as per WES evaluation is ***).

(Something about the research, show how it matches your interest, how you have been preparing for that research)

I am wondering if I could get an opportunity to learn under you and foster in this field. Expecting to hear a positive response from you.
Please find attached my CV that should give you a glimpse of my academics and other activities.

Sincerely,
**************
(Don't forget to attach your CV)
_________________________________________________________________________________

Frequently asked Questions:

Frequently Asked Questions:
1) Here is my TOEFL and GRE scores. Which universities are appropriate for me?
This is the most common question I have come across and the answer is not easy. Here are few things that I feel, and would like to share with you. Just for the sake of convenience I would like to categorize US universities into three categories:
§   Universities that look at TOEFL/GRE scores only, don’t care about your M.Sc. Percent
§   Universities that look at M.Sc. percentage, and require minimum TOEFL and GRE scores
§   Universities that look at both, TOEFL/GRE scores and M.Sc. percentage.
Now, it is up to you to find out which one is suitable for you. The best way to find out is to see where your seniors went, and what their TOEFL/GRE score and M.Sc. percentage was.


2) OK. I found 15 universities that I think is suitable for me but I want to apply to 8 of them. How to choose which ones?
The most logical way would be to look at the ranking of those universities and then choose, 2 top ones, 3 medium ones and 3 low ones. One other criteria would also be to find whether the campus has M.S program only or has PhD program as well. Below is the link to find the college rating.
http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/rankings/national-universities/data


3) Which are the universities that do not require application fee?
Above is the link. I cannot assure its validity, but nothing wrong in trying.


4) What is a GPA? My M.Sc. percentage is 72, What is my GPA?
GPA is an acronym for Grade Point Average.
When you come to USA for Masters/PhD, you need to enroll in at least 9 credit hours per semester to be in status. This means during each semester, you need to be taking 9 hours of classes each week. For example, I took 3 credit hour each of Quantum, Mathematical physics, and Electrodynamics to complete my 9 credit hour and stay in status. How much credit hour a course carries is decided by the university.
Now, for each course, at the end of the semester, the professor assigns a grade (A = more than 90 % marks, B= between 80 and 90% marks, C= between 70 and 80% mark, or F= fail).  So, A = 4 GPA, B = 3 GPA, C= 2 GPA. Now over the entire period as a graduate student, you find the average GPA of all the courses you have taken, and this will give you your overall GPA. Obviously, the maximum GPA a student can have is 4.0.
There is no hard and fast rule to convert the TU Percent based system to a GPA system. World Education Service (WES) is the authorized agency for conversion of your percentage into GPA. But only a very few universities require this.
Do not even attempt to convert your percentage to GPA using free sites and report that as your GPA! Just tell them your M.Sc. percentage.


5) Who is the best person to email in the University?
Professors who are also listed in the website as “Admission Committee” member would be the first one, “Graduate Advisor” will be the second one. If you do not see either of this words, then department head would be the best person to send emails to. If you send to a random professor instead, that email might not get forwarded to appropriate person at all, but, the department chief would definitely forward it to the appropriate person.



This is work in progress. Although we might be unable to answer all your queries in a timely manner, we will update this page in a regular manner such that frequently asked questions are answered.
Thank you,






Monday, September 10, 2018

ANPA Hosts Mahabir Pun


It was our privilege to host a talk by a Raman Magsaysay award-winner of 2007, Mahabir Pun. He has been nationally recognized for his attempt on uplifting impoverished villages with information technology, inspiring Nepali youths, and other several humanitarian works. Lately, he is deeply involved in National Innovation Center (NIC), a non-profit, which he established in 2012 with a long-term goal to make Nepal a developed country through the route of science and technology.

During this presentation, he talked about current activities on-going in NIC, highlighted the important updates and future projects, and also talked about some concept papers that were submitted to NIC and currently are being funded by NIC. He further emphasized his talk on the possible future project in collaboration between ANPA and NIC and the development of an innovative culture in Nepal for the economic growth of the country. Our members were very enthusiastic about the progress of NIC and we are happy to assist NIC in the future in terms of project viability study. Overall, the presentation focused on the past, present, and future of NIC. The full presentation can be found in the link below.

If you have any curiosities regarding the work of NIC, you can direct it to Mahabir Pun (Email: nicnepal.mahabir@gmail.com, Cell Phone (Nepal): 9841592361).


Thursday, August 30, 2018

Signing up for AmazonSmile

AmazonSmile is a website operated by Amazon with the same products, prices, and shopping features as Amazon.com. The difference is that when you shop on AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to the charitable organization of your choice.
In order to choose ANPA as your charitable organization, please follow following steps:
1) Go to smile.amazon.com
2) Sign in using your regular Amazon username and password. 




3) On the bottom where it says “Or Pick your own charitable organization:” type “Association of Nepali Physicists in America” in full and click on “Search”.  





4) You will see “Association of Nepali Physicists in America” listed. Click on “Select”.



5) A new screen will appear. Choose “Yes, I understand that I must always start at smile.amazon.com to support Association of Nepali Physicists in America.” And click on “Start Shopping”.

6) You are set. Now every time you make a purchase go to smile.amazon.com and ANPA will receive 0.5% of the purchase you made for eligible items. If set properly, you will see Supporting: Association of Nepali Physicists in America” on the top of your screen just below the search bar.


Items located at smile.amazon.com and amazon.com are of the same price. Thus the 0.5% of eligible purchases does not come from your pocket.

Thank you,


Monday, August 20, 2018

National Innovation Center: Past, Present and Future" by Mahabir Pun.

You are invited to an e-conference by Mahabir Pun on, "National Innovation Center: Past, Present, and Future". 
Please join us by WebEx on
Saturday, September 8th - 2018, 10 AM Central

“A Ramon Magsaysay award winner of 2007, Mahabir Pun, is an icon of social workers. He has been nationally recognized for his attempt on uplifting impoverished villages with information technology, inspiring Nepali youths and other several humanitarian works. Lately, he is deeply involved in the National Innovation Center (NIC), a non-profit, which he established in 2012 to provide platforms for youths with opportunities in science and technology. In this presentation, he will surf around NIC’s progress and other important updates, and also show some models of the concept papers that are currently being executed with the support of NIC. Overall, his presentation will focus on the past, present, and future of NIC.”




Saturday, August 11, 2018

The first ANPA e-Conference

Dear all,

One behalf of the conference organizing committee, I thank you all for your participation in the ANPA e-Conference 2018. In fact, the conference was first ever of this kind where physicists/physical scientists and research enthusiasts with a majority of the Nepali heritage had come together from around the globe to present a quality research thru the remote connection platform. I believe that this conference remains as a footprint of success in the history of our research communities. 

The primary focus of the conference was to bring all physics related research enthusiasts together in a platform under one roof to foster interaction among researchers of Nepali origin and beyond who were conducting quality research in different institutions worldwide. I hope you all enjoyed the excellent presentations that were given in important areas of physics by our invited and contributed speakers from different research institutions. I thank again to our all speakers who presented their talks, and helped to achieve the ultimate goal of this conference. 

Here I must express my gratitude to our chairs and judges who served the conference with a highest level of scientific professionalism. Further, I am delighted to express my gratitude to those generous donors whose contribution made possible to award the four best student presenters. I should take the names  of donors here; Dr. Madhav Gautam (Intel), Dr. Madhav Neupane (UCF), Dr. Dibaker Sigdel (UCLA), Dr. Nagendra Dhakal (UCF), Dr. Pashupati Dhakal (Jefferson Lab) and Dr. Shreeram Acharya (UCF). I thank them again. 

In addition to that, I should extend my gratitude to each member of the conference scientific committee, whose guidance throughout the conference became a cornerstone on resolving the problems. 

At last but not least, I cannot express in words the hard-work performed by the team of organizing committee to bring the conference to a success that we achieved. You all know that the path of organizing a conference is paved with hurdles and difficulties. Despite the hurdles and difficulties, we accomplished the mission due to an iconic example of a "Team-Work" that was shaped and contributed by each committee member. I thank each member of the organizing committee. 
I hope to have your cooperation continue in coming days. 

Stay tuned for upcoming events by visiting www.anpaglobal.org.

Sincerely,
Hari P. Paudel, Ph.D
General Chair