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COVID-19: A call for special articles for the next issue of the Newsletter.

The Editors and associates of the African Physics Newsletter sincerely hope that all its readers, their families, and friends have been spared illness because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

We direct our readers’ attention to the feature article of this issue by Editor-in-Chief, Prof. Igle Gledhill, that notes how physics impacts the understanding of this virus and its spread. These are important points to share just as are the personal stories of how this virus is affecting and perhaps redirecting our research and teaching and is changing the life in our physics and science departments, universities, and countries.

We hope to devote much of the next issue of the Newsletter to COVID-19 and its impact on physics in Africa, and the impact that physics and physicists in Africa are having on this virus and its pandemic. We invite all our readers and friends to share their stories and contribute an article to this special issue.

Please view the “Share and Contribute Section” section of the Newsletter and send your contribution to a member of the Editorial Board listed there. The article could be a short anecdote or a brief summary of a much larger article. Please make these submissions no later than April 24. Thank you. We wish you all good health and well-being during this challenging time.
What Use is Physics?
Tonight in Africa, we are washing our hands as we face curfews, closed borders, and lockdowns due to the coronavirus.

MeerKAT Telescope Discovers Radio Bubbles at Center of our Galaxy
South Africa’s MeerKAT has produced images that show the aftermath of a major energetic event near the center of the Milky Way.


Mini-African School on Electronic Structure Methods and Applications: MASESMA
Rwanda hosts a school on fundamentals of the behavior of electrons and predicting properties of chemical compounds using Ab Initio methods.
African Scientific Integration Network (AScIN): Seeking to Promote Science in Africa
African scientists from different backgrounds converged to establish a network seeking to promote the development of Science on the African continent.
Promoting Electrospinning in Africa
The African Materials Research Society held a pre-conference workshop on Electrospinning, a fiber-making technique, hosted in Arusha, Tanzania.
Obituary: Professor Muzi Ndwandwe
South African physics mourns the passing of Prof Ndwandwe, Head of the Physics Department at the University of Zululand.
Results and Recommendations of the Global Approach to the Gender Gap Study in Science
The experiences of men and women in physics and other disciplines differ, and recommendations and good practices are collected in this report.
Joint Feature Issue on Optics in Africa in JOSA A and JOSA B
Announcing a joint special issue of the Journal of the Optical Society of America, A and B, dedicated to research in Optics in Africa.


Save the Date: Upcoming Events

CCP4 Crystallographic School in South Africa – Data Collection to Structure Refinement and Beyond
(Postponed until 18-26 November 2020)
University of Cape Town, South Africa
The workshop will cover all aspects of protein structure solution by X-ray crystallography, including the fundamental concepts of protein crystallography, crystallographic data collection, processing of diffraction data, phasing, structure refinement, validation and deposition in the PDB, as well as an introduction to CryoEM and Electron Diffraction.

OISA Sixth Oukaimeden International School for Astrophysics
(Postponed until 2-10 November 2020)
Marrakech, Morocco
OISA is a thematic doctoral school proposed by the Laboratory of High Energy Physics and Astrophysics (LPHEA) and the Oukaimeden Observatory. This school will cover: Spectroscopy of variable stars; Near Earth Objects spectroscopy; Radial Velocity for exoplanets; Spectroscopy instrumentation; and Practical sessions of data processing.

YAS_NA 2020 Young African Scientists in North America
27 - 29 May 2020
Université du Québec à Montréal UQAM, Canada
The first meeting dedicated to young African scientists in North America. The Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) will host the conference YAS_NA 2020 - Young African Scientists in North America / Jeunes chercheurs africains en Amérique du nord. Its aim is to give African masters students, PhD candidates and post-doctoral scientists who are expatriate in North America information and elements to choose if they want to carry on their scientific career in Africa.

AES 2020 — 8th International Conference on Antennas and Electromagnetic Systems
(Postponed until 24-27 November 2020)
Marrakesh, Morocco
The goal of this newly restructured conference is to provide a forum for scientists, engineers and researchers to discuss and exchange novel ideas, results, experiences and work-in-process on all aspects of Antennas, Electromagnetics, Propagation, and Measurements.

6th African School on Electronic Structure Methods and Applications ASESMA-2020
(Postponed; New Date TBD)
EAIFR, Kigali, Rwanda
The African School series on Electronic Structure Methods and Applications (ASESMA) provides an introduction to the theory of electronic structure and other atomistic simulation methods, with an emphasis on the computational methods for practical calculations.

4 - 6 June 2020
Ziguinchor, Senegal
CasamanSun is a bi-annual conference aimed at promoting renewable energy and sustainable development in Africa.

23rd International Conference on Information Fusion
6 - 9 June 2020
To Be Held Virtually
The International Conference on Information Fusion is the premier forum for the interchange of the latest research in data and information fusion. The conference brings together researchers and practitioners from academia and industry to report on the latest scientific and technical advances.

US-Africa Initiative on Electronic Structure workshop
(Postponed; New Date TBD)
EAIFR, Kigali, Rwanda
The “U.S. – Africa Initiative in Electronic Structure” (USAfrI) aims to create a collaboration between African and U.S. physicists with the potential of significantly impacting research and education in Africa.

Astrophysics of Multi-Messenger Sources [Canceled]
29 June 2020
Potchefstroom, South Africa
South African Institute of Physics Winter School

Annual Conference of the South African Institute of Physics [Canceled]
29 June - 3 July 2020
Potchefstroom, South Africa
Physics of Condensed Matter and Materials, Nuclear, Particle and Radiation Physics, Photonics, Astrophysics, Space Science, Physics Education, Applied Physics, Theoretical and Computational Physics

16th International Conference on the Dark Side of the Universe
13 - 17 July 2020
EAIFR, Kigali, Rwanda
The DSU conferences are a series of international workshops in cosmology and astro-particle physics. The workshops bring together a wide range of theorists and experimentalists to discuss current ideas on models of the dark sector of the Universe, and relate them to ongoing and future experiments. Topics covered include: dark matter, dark energy, cosmic rays, neutrino physics, large-scale structure, black holes, gravitational waves, physics beyond the standard model, and more.

ASP2020 African School of Fundamental Physics and Applications
(Postponed; New Date TBD)
The Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NM-AIST), Arusha, Tanzania
This two-week short course introduces food irradiation, the use of nuclear technology for controlling spoilage and eliminating foodborne pathogens in food, and the utilization of nuclear technology to determine the source, age, movement and interaction of water above and below the ground.

CRéPAs Science and Society: Energy, Health and Environment in Africa
20 - 25 July 2020
Lomé - Togo
The theme of this second edition is "Science and Society: Energy, Health and Environment in Africa." This unifying theme will allow us to discuss all the issues related to renewable energy needs at the heart of the concerns about global warming, the automation of hospital practices in the era of "Internet of Things (IoT)" and the biological ecosystem (marine, forest and materials).

The Third African Synchrotron Light Source Conference AFLS3
16 - 21 Nov 2020
Kigali, Rwanda
The third African light source conference will review the light source based science and further progress the vision of an African Light Source.

Points of Contact Wanted!

We are looking for points of contact, that is, reporters, who can help us answer the question, "What is happening in physics in Africa?" Please contact Oversight Board members, Dr. J. E. Gubernatis ( or Prof. Nithaya Chetty (, to volunteer or to request more information.

Share and Contribute to the African Physics Newsletter

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