29 December 2020

ICTS-TIFR scientist Prof. Parameswaran Ajith has been awarded the inaugural TWAS-CAS Young Scientist Award for Frontier Science in the Physical Sciences, by the Italy-based World Academy of Sciences. This award recognizes outstanding young scientists from developing countries. 

“I am honoured and humbled by this recognition. I was fortunate to have many wonderful mentors, collaborators and students who made my work possible,” says Prof. Ajith, in response to the award announcement. “Modern science is a collaborative enterprise. This is particularly true in my area of research”, he adds.

Prof. Ajith’s research spans the physics and astrophysics of gravitational waves -- ripples in spacetime whose existence was predicted by Albert Einstein a century ago, and first detected by LIGO observations in 2015. A member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration since 2004, Prof. Ajith and his research group at ICTS-TIFR have made important contributions towards deciphering this Nobel-winning discovery. Prof. Ajith pioneered a method to model the expected gravitational-wave signals from colliding binary black holes. Theoretical models calculated using this method are now being used to extract the properties of gravitational-wave signals from LIGO observations. His research group at ICTS-TIFR has also developed ways to test Einstein’s theory from gravitational-wave observations and to study the properties of black holes that produce these waves.  

"At ICTS-TIFR, we are immensely proud of Prof. Ajith and his accomplishments. This recognition by TWAS in giving its inaugural award for young scientists in frontier areas to Ajith, in recognition of his important contributions to the LIGO discovery, is a particularly singular honour. It is a matter of pride not only for ICTS and TIFR but also for India, given how competitive this award is. Of course, this is not the first time that Ajith's work has gotten international recognition and I am sure it will not be the last. At ICTS we are actively growing the area of gravitational wave astronomy which will be one of the frontiers of humanity's exploration of the universe and through LIGO-India we can be world leaders in this area", says Prof. Rajesh Gopakumar, Centre Director, ICTS-TIFR.

About the TWAS-CAS Young Scientist Award for Frontier Science

Based in Trieste, Italy, TWAS – The World Academy of Sciences for the advancement of science, works to support sustainable prosperity through research, education, policy and diplomacy in developing countries. 

TWAS-CAS Young Scientist Award for Frontier Science was established in 2020 and is awarded to scientists not older than 45 years old, from developing countries. The first edition (2020) of the award recognizes achievements in the field of physical sciences.