Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Previous Archive
14 December 2020
Prof Abdon Atangana
Prof Abdon Atangana is known for his work in developing a new fractional operator used to model real-world problems arising in the fields of science, technology, and engineering. He was recently awarded the TWAS Mohammad A. Hamdan Award by The World Academy of Sciences.

Prof Abdon Atangana, Professor of Applied Mathematics in the Institute for Groundwater Studies at the University of the Free State (UFS), was awarded the TWAS Mohammad A. Hamdan Award by The World Academy of Sciences for the advancement of science in developing countries.

It is the first time that the TWAS Mohammad A. Hamdan Award was bestowed. According to a statement issued by TWAS, this award is given for outstanding mathematical work carried out by a scientist working and living in Africa or the Arab region. It states that the award can be given for work in pure mathematics, applied mathematics, probability, or statistics. Prof Atangana received the award for his contribution to fractal mathematics and partial differential equations.

Making a difference in society

He is known for his research in developing a new fractional operator, the Atangana-Baleanu operator, which is used to model real-world problems. With this operator, he not only describes the rate at which something will change, but also account for disrupting factors that will help to produce better projections.

His work can be applied to make complicated predictions in the fields of science, technology, and engineering. His models can, for instance, help to predict the spread of infectious diseases among people in a settlement, forecasting the number of people who will be infected each day, the number of people who will recover, and the number of people who will die.

Prof Atangana’s models can also help to advise people drilling for water by predicting how groundwater is flowing in a complex geological formation. These are only two examples of how his work can be applied to make a difference in society.

The award from TWAS is the third prestigious commendation he has received in the past month. He was recently named as one of the top 1% scientists on the global Clarivate Web of Science list. His name also appeared on a global list of leading scientists published by Stanford University in the United States. The list is the result of a study published in PLOS Biology, a peer-reviewed open-access journal.

World’s most accomplished scientists

Honours awarded by TWAS and its partners are among the most prestigious for research in the developing world. They recognise outstanding achievements and contributions to science and acknowledge the best work by scientists from the global South.

TWAS, founded in 1983 by a group of scientists under the leadership of Pakistani physicist and Nobel laureate, Abdus Salam, believes that developing nations – by growing strength in science and engineering – will be able to address challenges such as hunger, disease, and poverty, through their knowledge and skills.

TWAS is represented in 100 countries, and of the more than a thousand elected fellows, 14 are Nobel laureates. Eighty-four percent of these fellows are from developing nations. TWAS fellows are also some of the world’s most accomplished scientists.

News Archive

Sought-after fellowship for Deaf Kovsie academic
2012-04-25

 

Magteld Smith
Photo: Provided
25 April 2012

For a Deaf person to achieve academic excellence in a sound-dominated world is extremely challenging, but Ms Magteld Smith sees each challenge as another opportunity.

Ms Smith, a Medical Social Researcher at the University of the Free State (UFS), recently received the Herbert H Humphrey fellowship. She is one of only two South Africans to receive this fellowship.
 
The Humphrey Fellowship Program provides mid-career professionals from designated countries around the world with an opportunity to enhance their professional capabilities through participation and is developed specifically for small clusters of Humphrey Fellows at 18 selected US universities.
 
It was initiated in 1978 to honour the memory and accomplishments of the former Senator and Vice-President, Humbert H. Humphrey. Fellows are selected based on their potential for national leadership and commitment to public service, in either the public or private sector. The programme provides a basis for establishing long-lasting productive partnerships and relationships between citizens of the United States and their professional counterparts in other countries, fostering an exchange of knowledge and mutual understanding throughout the world.
 
Ms Smith applied for this fellowship, but was still very surprised when she heard her application was successful.
 
“Upon receiving the news, in my mind I saw an enormous rotating world globe and I asked my Heavenly Father, "What is happening now?" I saw big libraries with books, laboratories, state of the art technology for people with hearing impairments, big cars, big houses, big trucks, big farmers, big women and the White House with big trouble. Furthermore, I saw how the UFS became the world leader of academic excellence and change for people with disabilities with high technology manufacturing and rehabilitation programmes.”
 
Ms Smith says Prof. Jonathan Jansen, UFS Vice-Chancellor and Rector, is a great asset, because for the first time people with disabilities are high on the priority list.

 

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept