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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

Kovsies successfully host USSA Football Club Championships
2016-04-13

Description: 2016 04 12 KL Soccer Tags: Kovsies successfully host USSA Football Club Championships
Kovsies and Tshwane University of Technology in action at the University Sport South Africa Football Club Championships.
Photo: Charl Devenish

All 30 teams fought fiercely for their positions at the University Sport South Africa (USSA) Football Club Championships 2015 Tournament, held at the University of the Free State. The tournament was meant to be hosted here in Bloemfontein last year, but was re-scheduled for 21-25 March 2016. The University of Pretoria became champions in the men’s section, while the women’s trophy found a home at the University of the Western Cape.

Of the15 institutions taking part in the men’s section, Kovsies emerged at number 11. Our women’s team took the number seven spot among the 14 contenders.

KovsieSoccer coach, Godfrey Tenoff, was impressed with the women’s team. “Our girls outperformed themselves, given that we had only 15 players when we started the tournament, and ended up with 10 who were intact. They were absolutely phenomenal. We never lost in the group matches. The strength of the group enabled us to qualify for the Varsity Football competition.”

On the other hand, the performance of the men’s team was less impressive. “It’s disappointing that we did not produce the kind of performance needed for big competitions, although we had the best team. We are number one in the SAB League, yet some players are lacking the big match temperament,” he said.

However, there is still hope for better scores. The forthcoming Vodacom Cup and the USSA Championships taking place later this year are an opportunity to improve.

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