Lanka to host international parley on Chemistry
Sri Lanka will host an international conference on Chemistry, "Chemtech
2007" from June 21-23 in Colombo. The conference organised by the
Institute of Chemistry Ceylon (ICC) is themed "Chemistry, technology and
innovation for greater safety and economic growth."
President of the ICC Mevan Pieris said that 23 internationally
reputed scientists including reputed Sri Lankan expatriate scientists
are scheduled to participate in the seminar. The conference will discuss
topics such as bio technology, environmental chemistry, chemical
synthesis and disarmament of chemical weapons.
Sixty research papers, 22 plenary presentations and three technical
sessions will be presented, he said. The objective of the conference is
to interlink and promote collaborative research of universities,
research institutes and industries.
Pieris said that today these three sectors are doing research in
isolation and hence it is less productive. The conference will bring new
knowledge research experience and international research standards to
Sri Lanka, he said.
The keynote address will be delivered by Prof. Leslie Gunatillake,
director of the SW centre for natural product research and
commercialisation at the University of Arizona, US. The theme of his
presentation is "Chemistry for post-genomic era- New dimensions in
natural products chemistry for the 21st century".
The opening day technical sessions will focus on chemistry for
sustainable development and there will be six plenary presentations, 14
oral research papers and several poster presentations.
Prof. Barry Noller, Principal, Research Fellow of the University of
Queensland, Australia will make a presentation on "short and long term
environmental fate of pollutants and their management".
Prof. Noller is also the director of the National Centre for
Environmental Toxicology, Australia, an authority on environmental
chemistry. Dr. S.P. Vasireddi will make a presentation on "the art of
analysis in environmental chemistry".
Dr. Vasireddi is the managing director of Vimta labs Ltd, Hyderabad
and Asia Pacific representative to the World Association of Industrial
Technology Research Organisation.
Prof. David Williams of the Cardiff University, UK will present a
paper on "environmental chemical and health links; specialisation and
speculation." Prof. Iqbal Choudhary will make a presentation on "green
chemistry by using microorganisms and cell suspension culture". Prof.
Choudhary is the director of the International Centre for Chemical and
Biological Science, Karachi, Pakistan.
The post-lunch session on the first day will have two plenary
presentations. Prof. Joseph Keriko, director of the Institute of Energy
and Environmental Technology will present a paper on the "Use of plant
natural products in traditional and modern medicine for the control of
animals and human diseases for sustainable global development".
He is also the Professor of Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture
and Technology, Kenya.
The second presentation will be made by Prof. Veranja Karunaratne on
"Sustainable utilisation of Sri Lankan flora". Prof. Karunaratne, is an
outstanding Sri Lankan researcher who graduated from the University of
Peradeniya and obtained his PhD from the University of British Columbia,
The second day of the conference will focus on emerging nanoscience
and technology. Six outstanding plenary speakers will address the second
Another reputed Sri Lankan scientist Prof. A.P. De Silva of Queens
University of Belfast, Ireland, will speak on "Molecular information
handling, design, implementation and application". Prof. de Silva is an
expert in photochemistry and is a graduate of the University of Colombo.
Prof. Raymond Fernando of the University of California will focus his
presentation on "Nano material for plastic industry."
Dr. Rajendra Prasad will make a presention on "research trends in
nanomaterials". He is specially interested to develop collaborative
research and bring project based nanotechnology to Sri Lanka.
Two internationally renowned Sri Lankan nanotechnologists, Prof.
Gihan Amaratunge of the University of Cambridge and Prof. Ravi Silva of
the University of Surrey will also participate in the sessions. Prof.
Amaratunge will speak on nanotubes and nanowires for electronics. Prof.
Silva's presentation will be on "large area lighting and photovoltic
devices using nano engineered organic tube composites".
These two presentations will be based on multidisciplinary
interactive research between chemists, physicists and engineers and are
targeted at academia and industrialists. Prof. L.M.V. Tillekeratne,
Associate Professor of the College of Pharmacy, University of Toledo,
USA will speak on "Nanochemicals for studying biochemical processes".
His presentation will cover work done by using nanoparticles for
studying the cholinergic neurotransmission process with possible
applications in medicine and bio-defence.
The final day session of the conference will begin with a
presentation by Prof. T.K. Chandrashekar, Director of the Regional
Research Laboratory of CSIR, Trivandrum, India. His topic is "Chemistry
driven multidisciplinary research opportunities."
Chemtech 2007 will also focus on the area of chemical weapons to
promote greater safety. The conference will discuss on hazard materials
and disarmament of chemical weapons. Dr. Ralf Trapp, a renowned
international expert and consultant on disarmament of chemical and
biological weapons will speak on "Chemical weapons and disarmament".
The concluding lecture at the conference will be presented by another
well known Sri Lankan scientist, Prof. Eugene de Silva. Prof. Silva who
holds a double PhD in Chemistry from Knightsbridge University UK and in
Plasma Physics Manchester Metropolitan University is also a graduate of
the Institute of Chemistry Ceylon.
He is the Director of the Virginia Research Institute USA. The
conference is open to all those interested.