BINA Workshop- The Belgo-Indian Network for Astronomy and Astrophysics (BINA) recently hosted an international workshop, emphasizing the importance of scientific collaboration in stimulating advancements in space sciences. The workshop, organized by the Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences (ARIES), an autonomous institute under India’s Department of Science & Technology (DST), brought together experts from India, Belgium, the United States, Canada, Poland, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Ethiopia, and Kenya.
Mr. Didier Vanderhasselt, Belgium Ambassador to India, highlighted the successful partnership between the Belgian Science Policy Office (BELSPO) and DST on various projects, including cyber security, bioscience, marine science, black hole, and climate change research. The workshop aimed to showcase the scientific potential of Indo-Belgian cooperation.
Shri S K Varshney, Head of International Cooperation at DST, emphasized the importance of networking for research collaboration. Prof. Dipankar Banerjee, Director of ARIES, spoke on the need to attract young minds to space research through various institutes and gave an overview of Indian and Belgian Solar Space Missions, including Aditya L-1, India’s first space mission to study the sun.
Dr. Peter De Cat of the Royal Observatory of Belgium and Dr. Santosh Joshi of ARIES provided insights into the BINA workshop’s genesis, activities, and scientific programs. The workshop took place at the Graphic Era Hill University (GEHU) as part of an MoU between ARIES and GEHU, with representatives from top Belgian institutes discussing further collaboration opportunities.
BINA was established in 2014 to foster space research collaboration between Belgian and Indian institutes. The network has resulted in the establishment of two Indo-Belgian telescopes at the Devasthal Observatory of ARIES in Nainital, Uttarakhand: the 3.6-m Devasthal Optical Telescope (DOT) and the 4-m International Liquid Mirror Telescope (ILMT). These are the largest-sized optical telescopes in India, and the collaboration has produced notable scientific publications and manpower training.
Since 2014, DST and BELSPO have supported BINA by funding work visits, workshops, and other initiatives. As part of the recent workshop, 14 popular talks by BINA participants were organized for young students in nearby schools, colleges, and universities.
#BINA #SpaceSciences #ARIES #IndoBelgianCollaboration #Astronomy #Astrophysics #ScientificCooperation #DST #BELSPO
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