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50 Years of Physics in Singapore

The Academic Turned Entrepreneur

For five decades, Professor Phua Kok Khoo (KK) has made important contributions to physics research and education in Singapore, from his research in particle physics at Nanyang University in the 1970s, to founding the World Scientific Publishing Company, and numerous philanthropic programmes in support of physics students in Singapore and the rest of Southeast Asia. He is also the Founding Director Emeritus of IAS NTU, Adjunct Professor at NTU and NUS.

As a young graduate of Birmingham University under Prof Tony Skyrme (Royal Society’s Hughes Medallist), Prof Phua returned to Singapore in 1971 and established a particle physics research group at Nanyang University, and later at National University of Singapore, and published over 80 articles in his scientific career.

As a visionary scientist, his dream was to promote frontier research in Asia and make Singapore into a hub for international scientists to gather and exchange news and ideas. His desire was to make Singapore into a world center for the publication of books and journals in frontiers of science. For this, he sought the advice of Nobel Laureates Professors Chen-Ning Yang, Abdus Salam, and Steven Weinberg. And in 1981, he established the World Scientific Publishing Company. Few months ago, a special volume “Looking Beyond the Frontiers of Science” was dedicated to him on the occasion of his 80th Birthday. 

This one-day symposium celebrates the work of Prof Phua, and commemorates the development of physics and physicists in Singapore over the past 50 years. We are delighted to have a prestigious line-up of speakers from NTU, NUS, SUTD, etc.

Read more about Prof K K Phua.

 

Our Distinguished Speakers

Phua Kok Khoo
Phua Kok Khoo

Founding Director Emeritus of IAS NTU; Adjunct Professor,  SPMS NTU and National University of Singapore

Title of talk: The Story of the Institute of Advanced Studies at NTU

Ricky Ang
Ricky Ang

Ng Teng Fong Chair Professor; Head (Science, Mathematics and Technology), Singapore University of Technology and Design

Title of talk: Physics, Applied Maths and Engineering: my research and educational pedagogy in SUTD

Belal Baaquie
Belal E Baaquie

Helixtap Technologies

Title of talk: Physics and Multidisciplines: My Journey in Physics

 

Antonio Castro-Neto

Director, Centre for Advanced 2D Materials; Distinguished Professor, National University of Singapore

Title of talk: Singapore, Graphene Island  

 

 

Kwek Leong Chuan
Kwek Leong Chuan

Co-Director, Quantum Science and Engineering Centre, NTU; Associate Professor, National Institute of Education 

Title of talk: From NISQ Computing to Chip-based Optical Machine Learning

LAI Choy Heng
Lai Choy Heng

Emeritus Professor, National University of Singapore

Title of talk: Thanks for the Exciting Journey, KK

 

 

Oh Choo Hiap
Oh Choo Hiap

Emeritus Professor, National University of Singapore

Title of talk: Theoretical High Energy Physics at NUS 

Shen Ze Xiang
Shen Zexiang

Associate Dean (Interdisciplinary Programme), Graduate College, NTU

Title of talk: Optoelectronic Property Tuning of Perovskites Using Pressure 

 

 
Bernard Tan
Bernard Tan

Emeritus Professor, National University of Singapore

Talk Title: A Life of Service to Physics

Andrew Wee
Andrew Wee

Professor, National University of Singapore; Immediate Past President, Singapore National Academy of Science

Talk title: Physics in Singapore Since the 1990s

 

 
Zhang Baile
Zhang Baile

Assistant Chair, Research & Graduate Studies (Division of Physics & Applied Physics), SPMS NTU

Scattering-Free Metamaterials Research: from Invisibility Cloaking to Topological Photonics

 


Programme

Updated as of 27 Jan 2023

Download the programme here

3 February 2023 (Friday)
Time (GMT +8) Programme 
8:00 - 8:55
Registration
9:00 - 9:15
Welcome Addresses
 

Session 1 

9:15 - 9:45
Prof Lai Choy Heng
Thanks for the Exciting Journey, KK
9:45 - 10:15
Prof Belal Baaquie
Physics and Multidisciplines: My Journey in Physics
10:15 - 10:25
Group Photo-Taking
10:25 - 11:00
Coffee Break 
11:00 - 11:30
Prof Bernard Tan
A Life of Service to Physics
 

Session 2

11:30 - 12:00
Prof Phua Kok Khoo 
The Story of the Institute of Advanced Studies at NTU
12:00 - 12:30
Prof Oh Choo Hiap 
Theoretical High Energy Physics at NUS
12:30 - 14:00
Lunch Break and Poster Session

Afternoon Sessions: Physics Now - Building on Foundations

 

Session 3

14:00 - 14:30
Prof Andrew Wee
Physics in Singapore Since the 1990s
14:30 - 15:00
Prof Shen Zexiang 
Optoelectronic Property Tuning of Perovskites Using Pressure 
15:00 - 15:30
Prof Antonio Castro-Neto
Singapore, Graphene Island  
15:30 - 16:00
Coffee Break 
 

Session 4

16:00 - 16:30
Prof Kwek Leong Chuan 
From NISQ Computing to Chip-based Optical Machine Learning
16:30 - 17:00
Prof Ricky Ang
Physics, Applied Maths and Engineering: my Research and Educational Pedagogy in SUTD
17:00 - 17:30
Prof Zhang Baile 
Scattering-free Metamaterials Research: from Invisibility Cloaking to Topological Photonics
17:30 - 17:40
Closing Remarks
  
19:00
Dinner (by invitation)