1 Soft Matter and Solid State Physics Group
(1.a) Group Members: Professor R N Singh, Professor S M Mujibur Rahman, Dr S Osman, Dr Issam Ali, Dr Nidhal Sulaiman and visiting consultants.
(1.b) Research Programs: Theoretical approaches based on statistical thermodynamics, electronic theory and computer simulation are used to investigate the properties, the microscopic structure and the interactions among the constituent species of fluids and fluid mixtures, metals and alloys, metallic interfaces and the biological polymers. 2D simulations of the stochastic rotation mode are considered to map the dynamics of polymers such as proteins and DNA which move from one side of the membranes to the other through nanopores. Along with, a comprehensive approach of the perturbation theory is used to reveal the origin of intriguing process that are associated with segregation, immiscibility and phase equilibrium of fluids and fluid mixtures over an extended region of temperatures and pressures with special emphasis to astrophysical thermo physical conditions. For conducting systems, however, the first principle psuedopotential approach of electronic theory is considered to study the properties and structure of crystalline binary alloys consisting of less simple metals. Structure and properties of undercooled and expanded liquid metals and alloys are also investigated within the frame work of electronic theory.
(1.c) Ongoing Research Projects: Soft Matter Topics
- Translocation of polymers under various conditions of the fluid in which the polymer is immersed.
- Quantum correction to energy for H2 and He at very low temperatures.
- Stability and properties of H2- He, H2-Ne and H2-Ar fluid mixtures in the extended region of temperatures and pressures.
- Interfacial surface tension of liquid metals, shear viscosity of liquid metals, phase stability in Ga-Pb liquid mixture.
- Surface properties of liquid metals.
- The mobility of a particle trapped in a pipe
- The Interfacial surface tensions of liquid metals
- The shear viscosity and diffusion coefficient of liquid metals
- The phase stability in Ga-Pb liquid mixture.
- Electrical transport in liquid metals and alloys : t-matrix formalism.
- Temperature dependence of the thermodynamic and atomic transport properties of crude oils.
(1.d) Ongoing Research Projects: Solid and Liquid State Topics
- Structure and thermodynamic properties of crystalline binary alloys.
- Structural stability of amorphous systems.
- Temperature dependence of the thermodynamic properties of mantle minerals.
(1.e) Future Projects
- Packaging and ejection of polymers from viral and capsids with 3D simulations.
- Atomic transport in fluid mixtures.
- Amorphous systems under t-matrix formalism.
- Phase diagrams of hydrogen, helium and hydrogen-helium mixtures at high temperatures and pressures.
- The ejection dynamics of RNA from viral capsids,
(1.f) Ongoing Collaborations
- Rudolf Peierls Center for Theoretical Physics, Oxford University, England.
- Max-Plank Institute for Metals Research, Stuttgart, Germany.
- Laboratoire de Physique des Liquids et des Interfaces, Metz University, France.
- College of Education, Bisha, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
- College of Science and Techniques of Tangier, Tangier,Morocco.
- Physics Department, University of Dhaka, Dhaka, Bangladesh.
- International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Trieste, Italy
- SUPA, School of Physics, University of Edinburgh, Mayfield Road, Edinburgh EH3 9JZ, UK.
2 High Energy Physics and Cosmology
(2.a) Group Members: Professor Mehmet Koca, Dr Mudhahir Al Ajmi, Dr Saleh Shidhani, Dr Muataz Al- Barwani and visiting consultants.
(2.b) Research Programs: Our interest is the symmetries of the problems of high energy physics and cosmology. The group theoretical applications such as GUT’s, relevance of quaternions and octonions to exceptional Lie algebras are among the main theme. We work on the finite subgroups of quaternions and relate them to the root systems in 4-dimensions. We construct the Weyl-Coxeter groups of the roots of concern by quaternion actions on the lattice vectors. In this context we obtain the polyhedral structures in three dimensions using the orbits of the subgroups acting in 3- dimensions of the Weyl-Coxeter groups in 4-dimensions. We also work on the project where a Lie group can be broken to its finite subgroups by Higg’s mechanism. Description of the root system of the exceptional group E8 by octonions and its automorphism group and the relevant subgroups have been worked out for some time. In particular, the Chevalley group G2(2) reveals itself as the automorphism group of the octonionic root system of E7. Description of the lattice structure of E8 with icosians and its relation to the Coxeter group H4 is also among our current interest.
Our interest extends to the description of the universe with a manifold S3/ Γ where S3 is the group of quaternions isomorphic to SU(2) and Γ is one of the finite subgroups of SO(4). We work on a project whether one can reproduce the experimental data on the temperature distribution by using one of those polyhedra in 3-dimension.
(2.c) Ongoing Projects in High Energy Theory
- Quaternions and Polyhedra
- Decompositions of the 4-dimensional polytopes with respect to the polyhedral groups in 3-dimensions
- Quaternionic Roots of SO(8), SO(9)
- F4 and the related Weyl groups.
(2.d) Ongoing Collaborations:
- The group has a strong on-going collaboration with R. Koc in Turkey.
(2.e) Future projects:
- E8 polytopes and their decompositions under H4symmetry
- The Universe as S3/H and the unisotropy in temperature
- Medieval Islamic arts and Coxeter symmetry H2
3 Liquid Crystal : Experimental and Simulations
(3.a) Group Members : Dr Abraham George, Dr Carlo Carboni, Dr Salim Al-Harthy, Dr Sayyadul Arafin and visiting consultants.
Liquid crystal materials can display a rich variety of phase transitions. Apart from the many applications in display and other devices liquid crystals provide a fertile ground to investigate fundamental problems related to phase transitions. The liquid crystal group at SQU undertakes both experimental and theoretical research as well as computer simulations of these fascinating materials. The group has an active collaboration with the Chemistry Department for the design and synthesis of new liquid crystal materials. The group maintains informal collaboration with several research groups in Europe, the US and in India.
The group has now fully operational set-ups for dielectric studies, polarized light microscopy, ferroelectric and electro-optic response, density and surface and interfacial tension measurement.
The group undertakes both experimental and theoretical research as well as computer simulations. Current research programs include frustration in chiral nematic liquid crystals, ferroelectric and anitferroelectric materials, de Vries smectic phases, interfacial surface tension, dielectric spectroscopy, photoacoustic and photothermal studies, and simulation of colloidal interface interaction.
(3.b) Ongoing Experimental Projects
- Investigation of low molar mass organosiloxane liquid crystals.
- Collective dynamics and multicritical point investigation in chiral deVries SA phase by low frequency dielectric spectroscopy.
- Phase transition studies in liquid crystals from density and interfacial tension measurements.
- Behavior of the surface tension and interfacial tension in the vicinity of phase transitions in liquid crystals.
- Solitons in frustrated chiral nematic liquid crystals.
- Systematic investigation of the occurrence of deVries SA phases in low molar mass organosiloxane liquid crystals.
(3.c) Ongoing Simulation Projects
- Simulations of colloids near an Nematic-Isotropic interface.
(3.d) Future Projects
- Measurement of the penetration depth of the surface induced order near the isotropic to nematic transition.
- Flexo electric liquid crystal materials
(3.e) Ongoing Collaborations
- Department of Physics. Warwick University, Warwick, UK.
- IRC, Leeds University, Leeds, UK.
- Liquid Crystal Institute, Southampton University, UK.
4 Mossbauer and Magnetism Group
(4.a) Group Members: Professor Ali Yousif, Dr Mohamed Elzain, Dr Ahmed Al-Rawas, Dr Abbasher Gismelseed, Dr Hisham Widatallah, Dr Imad Al-Omari, Dr. Khalid Bouziane and visiting consultants.
(4.b) Research Programs: The applications of magnetism and magnetic materials range enormously and their use has recently been vital for industry, especially for communication and IT. For this reason, research in magnetism and magnetic materials is experiencing a renaissance. Our group is involved in various theoretical and experimental investigations on the electronic and magnetic structure of alloys, compounds, surfaces, interfaces and nanoparticles of transition metals and metalloids, oxides, natural materials, including meteorites and corrosion products.
The theoretical studies are done using ab initio and atomistic simulation methods. There are a number of advanced and research-level laboratories including temperature dependent (80-800K) Mössbauer spectrometers, with external polarizing magnetic field of up to .9 T, temperature dependent (77-1000K) vibrating sample magnetometer and 1.3 T magnetic field, temperature dependent (77-1000K) Faraday magnetic susceptibility and up to 1 T magnetic field, and a ball milling set up. In addition the group utilizes the various college facilities such as scanning electron microscope (SEM), X-ray diffraction and X-ray fluorescence spectrometers.
(4.c) Ongoing Projects
- Cation distribution and magnetism of spinels and perovskites
- Electronic and magnetic structure of Fe-3d systems
- Magnetic structure of Fe and/or Co rare-earth compounds
- Characterization of meteorites
- Transformation in doped iron oxides
- Identification of corrosion products
- Magnetism of nano-iron oxides
(4.d) Ongoing Collaborations
- Chemistry and Earth Sciences Departments.Vienna University, Austria.
- Physics Department, Nanjing University, Nanjing, China
- Instituto de Física La Plata, CONICET, La Plata, Argentina.
- Department of Chemistry, the Open University, UK
- Instituto de Quimica-Fisica ‘Rocasolano’, c/ Serrano 119, 28006, Madrid, Spain..
- Institute of Physics, Technical University of Lublin, Lublin, Poland
- Physics Department, Al-Azhar University, Egypt.
- Physics Department, University Lübeck, Germany.
- Physics Department, Yarmouk University, Jordan.
- Physics Department, Khartoum University, Sudan.
- Physics Department, Uppsala University, Sweden.
- Physics Department Nassau Community College, USA.
(4.e) Future Projects
- Synthesis, Characterization, and Magnetic Structure of Double Perovskites
- Identifications of chondrites and anchondrites meteorites
- Magnetic and electrical characterization study of Mn-implanted Si-carbide (Mn-SiC)
- Magnetic and elastic properties of Ni/Mo and Co/Al multilayers
5 Surface and Nano-Science
(5.a) Group Members: Dr Salim Al-Harthi, Dr Mohammed Al-Busaidy, Dr Faramarz Gard, Dr Azzouz Sellai, Dr Khalid Bouziane, Dr Mohammed Mamor and visiting consultants.
(5.b) Research Programs: Nanoscience is an interdisciplinary field that seeks to bring about mature nanotechnology. Focusing on the nanoscale intersection of fields such as physics, biology, engineering, chemistry, computer science and more, nanoscience is rapidly expanding. Nanotechnology centers are popping up around the world as more funding is provided and nanotechnology market share increases. The rapid progress is apparent by the increasing appearance of the prefix "nano" in scientific journals and the news. Thus, we intend to expand our research activities in the direction of nanotechnology in the course of the next few years. It is our goal to establish an inter-regional collaboration among the countries in this part of the world. The Surface and Nano Science group at Department of Physics is the first step towards a center for nanoscience at SQU.
(5.c) Ongoing Surface Physics Projects
- Atmospheric corrosion maps and corrosion products of mild steel, copper, aluminum and zinc in Muscat (H.M. Project).
- The effect of atomic hydrogen as a surfactant and a cleaning agent for semiconductor epitaxial growth (M. Sc. Project).
- Electrical behavior and dimensional effects in Silicide/Si systems.
(5.d) Ongoing Nano Science Projects
- Growth and characterization of Co thin film.
(5.e) Ongoing Collaborations
(5.f) Future Projects
- Growth and characterization of Fe nano-wires