Indo-Thai workshop on stellar variability & star formation at ARIES helps strengthen collaborations

New Delhi: Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES), Nainital, an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), organized a one-day Indo-Thai workshop on ‘Investigating the Stellar Variability and Star Formation’to strengthen ongoing collaboration and expand the Indo-Thai cooperation from stellar sources to other areas of astronomy and astrophysics such as extra-galactic astronomy and instrumentation.

The workshop deliberated on various topics such as stellar variability, star formation, stellar abundance, transient events, and instrumentation with 14 talks by the scientists and students of both the countries. About 60 participants from the National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand (NARIT), Nanjing University China, Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA), Kumaun University, Nainital, and ARIES, attended this international conference.

In his welcome address Dr. Santosh Joshi, the convener of the workshop, stressed on the importance of Indo-Thai collaboration in science and technology and invited the astronomers from India and Thailand for cooperation in space science and instrumentation. Dr. Joshi also presented a glimpse of the ongoing and planned activities under the Indo-Thai collaboration.

The guest speaker Prof. Ram Sagar, the former director of ARIES, summarized the importance of bilateral programme supported by the funding agencies of both the countries. The Chief Guest of the event, Prof. H. C. Chandola, head department of Physics, Kumaun University inaugurated the function and spoke about the history of ARIES and NARIT, Thailand, and similarity of the Indian and Thai cultures that brings the researchers of both the countries closer. The summary of the workshop and concluding remarks was given by Dr. David Mkrtichian, senior researcher of NARIT, Thailand.

To setup the cooperation in the fields of Science and Technology, DST and Ministry of Science & Technology of the Kingdom of Thailand sanctioned two joint bilateral programmes for joint research in the area of Astronomy and Astrophysics. Indian astronomers from the Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA), Bangalore and ARIES, Nainital in coordination with Thai astronomers from NARIT, Thailand are simulating the research in the area of the space and atmospheric science using the observational facilities available in both the countries.

The workshop also discussed how collaborations and joint ventures help in exchanging the knowledge of the investigators involved in the projects and gives the opportunity to train the young researchers as well.