New Publication: Zahid Hussain translates “Seven Brief Lessons on Physics” into Urdu

Final year PGR Zahid Hussain in partnership with Fasi Malik, University of California has translated Carlo Rovelli’s “Seven Brief Lessons on Physics” into Urdu. Their translation has just been published by Mashal Books, Lahore. Below, Zahid discusses his motivations and the importance of the book:

I am pleased to announce that our translation of Carlo Rovelli’s book “Seven Brief Lessons on Physics” into Urdu (Pakistan’s national language) has been published by Mashal Books, Lahore. This work is a part of my outreach activities under CDT Metamaterials XM2 to promote science to inspire young students and also, the general public. The reason for translating this interesting book into Urdu is to introducing new scientific developments and concepts of physics in a simple and easy-to-understand language. Secondly, I find it very useful to promote such work to those curious readers who cannot access them in English. A short description of the book is given below:

The book provides a very brief overview of the most fascinating aspects of the great intellectual revolution that has occurred in physics in the twentieth century. In a very simple language, Carlo Rovelli explains to us that the image of the world our ancestors carried with them in prehistoric times, was challenged by the Greek philosophers. Later on, Galileo, Copernicus and Newton’s scientific contributions caused a paradigm shift in our perception of the reality. Afterwards, in the wake of the 20th century, the birth of Quantum mechanics and Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity provided us with a new understanding of the physical world we live in. Now, we know that either it’s a world of very small objects (at the atomic scale) or the world of bigger objects which we can see with our eyes, the reality is quantized. Everything, known in this material universe and even all the fundamental forces of nature interact with matter through the particles. The most fascinating aspect of this simple book is that it leaves the reader with this conclusion that science shows us how to better understand the world and also reveals to us that just how vast is the extent of what is still not known.

Zahid began his translation in 2018, with three chapters published online, so this is the culmination of years of dedication. Congratulations to Zahid for this great achievement.

Porous ZnO/Carbon nanocomposites derived from metal-organic frameworks for highly efficient photocatalytic applications – A correlational study

Congratulations to XM² PGR student (third year) Mian Zahid Hussain for his latest publication on “Porous ZnO/Carbon nanocomposites derived from metal-organic frameworks for highly efficient photocatalytic applications – A correlational study” in Carbon journal. Abstract below.


Porous ZnO/C nanocomposites derived from 3 different Zinc based metal-organic frameworks (MOFs) including MOF-5, MOF-74 and ZIF-8, were prepared at high temperature under water-steam atmosphere and their performances in photocatalytic H2 evolution reaction (HER) and photodegradation of organic dye pollutants were evaluated. The formation mechanism from MOF precursors, the structural properties, morphologies, compositions and textural properties of the derived ZnO/C composites were fully investigated based on different characterization techniques and the correlation between the precursors and the derived composites was discussed. It is evident that MOF precursors determine the crystalline structures, doping profiles, thermal stabilities and metal oxide-carbon weight percentage ratios of the resulting composites.

The correlation between MOFs and their derived nanocomposites indicates that different parameters play unalike roles in photocatalytic performances. The desired properties can be tuned by selecting appropriate MOF precursors. MOF-5 derived porous ZnO/C nanocomposite not only exhibits the highest photocatalytic dye degradation activity under visible light among these MOFs, but also outperforms those derived from MOF-74 and ZIF-8 up to 9 and 4 times in photocatalytic HER respectively. This study offers simple and environmentally friendly approaches to further develop new homogeneously dispersed functional metal oxide/carbon composites for various energy and environment-related applications.


Zahid has previously published on ZnO nanocomposites studies, and is currently working on a translation of Carlo Rovelli’s book “Seven Brief Lessons on Physics” into Urdu.