The Syed Babar Ali (SBA) Research Awards Program recognizes and supports potentially high-impact work being carried out by current PhD students in the Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering, LUMS. The recipients of this award, called SBA Fellows, are expected to pursue research and scholarly activities that support knowledge creation and innovation in science and engineering as well as contribute to the economic well-being of society at large.
As part of this prestigious programme, SBA Fellows benefit from a monthly stipend as well as additional research support (for example, for procuring equipment, consumables, covering research travel expenses, publication fee for journals etc.) from a central fund exclusively allocated for this program, i.e. SBA Scholars fund. The award is sponsored by the Babar Ali Foundation.
- Only PhD students in the Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering are eligible to apply.
- Applicants must have successfully defended their PhD Proposal. PhD students who have not successfully defended their proposal will not be considered.
- At the time of submission of the SBA Fellowship proposal, the applicant must not have completed four years of his/her PhD degree program, calculated from the time of admission.
- Applicant must submit a Letter of Support from the PhD supervisor along with the proposal.
On 18 August 2020, the School celebrated its inaugural cohort comprising of the 4 PhD students as the winners of the Syed Babar Ali Research Awards. The celebratory event was held online where the winners had a chance to present their research to Syed Babar Ali, Founding Pro Chancellor of LUMS University. Also in attendance were Dr. Arshad Ahmad, Vice Chancellor; Dr. Sabieh Anwar, Dean SBASSE and the different supervisors involved in helping the researchers.
For more details about the event, please visit the link: SBARA 2020
Testimonial by Dean SBASSE
I gladly announced the initiation of the Syed Babar Ali Research Awards for PhD students who have already defended their proposals. The Awards will celebrate at least five scholars every year, called the Syed Babar Ali Fellows, who will be selected for the novelty of their research work, and the potential for lasting impact to their disciplines and the society. PhD students wishing to apply for this Award will be required to apply on a prescribed format and selection will be done by the School's graduate council.
This prestigious award carries a scholarship amount. Fellows will also have access to a Syed Babar Ali Research Fund, for which they need to apply separately. Following approval, this fund can be used to support the awardees' research needs such as materials and supplies, small equipment, travel for research or training, and article processing charges in the top most journals.
I thank the Babar Ali Foundation for this generous support to our PhD program and in bolstering student led research. Research and creation or synthesis of knowledge is our mainstay and I can say on behalf of all our Faculty, that we will continue to facilitate for you the route to discovery and innovation. The creation of SBARA is one important milestone. Needless to say, the Foundation will be acknowledged in all work emanating from this Award.
Muhammad Sabieh Anwar
Cohort 2021 of SBA Fellows
Enhanced thermal and moisture stability of the emerging PVs while using discotic liquid Crystals
Supervisor: Dr. Ammar Ahmed Khan
Department of Physics
Energizing solar cell technology
How strange does ‘flowing crystals’ sound? It seems at the heart of key scientific discoveries lie nature’s most well-kept secrets, tied up nicely with a bow of non-intuition; such is the existence of DLC i.e., discotic liquid crystals. Supervised by Dr. Ammar Ahmed Khan, Ms. Qurat ul Ain has worked with a next generation of materials that are more potent in catching and harnessing light to be converted into electricity, compared to contemporary technology. This leap of faith can be summed up into three words: perovskite solar cells.
Investigating the role of proteins in disease and their treatment with drugs
Supervisor: Dr. Safee Ullah Chaudhry
Department of Biology
Uncovering protein structures
Trillions of cells need a multi-trillion economy of well-kept proteins, safe metabolic environments, and reliable understanding of their complex interactions with drugs. Ms. Kanzal Iman, under supervision of Dr. Safee Ullah Chaudhry, proposes to uncover the structure of these important proteins, through developing better computer programs that do the heavy lifting by bypassing less efficient ways current software applications have in place. In other words, her project aims to develop software that works smarter, rather than harder. This will potentially unlock ways in understanding disease prevalence and eventually the drug interactions involved in treatment.
Designing the cellular core for ultra-low latency communication-based applications
Supervisor: Dr. Zafar Ayyub Qazi
Department of Computer Science
Cellular without speed limits
Can research rid the world of lag in communication technology? Mukhtiar Ahmad may have an answer! Supervised by Dr. Dr. Zafar Ayyub Qazi, Mr. Mukhtiar is working on thinking about cellular network systems from the ground up that can provide extremely low latency, enabling wide scale prevalence of mind-blowing technologies that may have a groundbreaking impact on many fields, ranging from medical science to online gaming. These applications require higher reliability and ultra-low latency, in the order of 10 ms. Mr. Mukhtiar Ahmad aims to re-design the cellular networks to support low latency communication-based applications.
Noninvasive Blood Glucose Monitoring System using Single Wavelength NIR Spectrometry
Supervisor: Dr. Wala Saadeh
Department of Electrical Engineering
The future of monitoring diabetes
Imagine measuring blood sugar levels without pricking any part of the skin. Ms. Aminah Hina’s project is all about developing a non-invasive blood glucose monitoring system. Although the product idea itself isn’t new. The market is saturated with portable gluco-meters and few companies even offer wireless blood glucose monitoring support. However, the caviat is their price – these devices are expensive! Ms. Aminah Hina, along with Dr. Wala Saadeh, propose a cheaper alternate. Pakistan is amongst the list of countries with highest prevalence of diabetes. Approximately 19 million Pakistanis have been diagnosed with diabetes in the year 2020. The research project of Ms. Aminah is poised to address this large fraction of Pakistani adults as well as some fraction of the Pakistani youth that suffers from both sub-types of the disease.
Evaluation of Protective Immune Response Induced by Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccines (PCV-10) in Individuals with Type 2 diabetes
Supervisor: Dr. Shaper Mirza
Department of Biology
Easy breathing for diabetics
Diabetes is bad enough. Patients suffering this terrible illness have an additional risk of running into frequent respiratory tract infections. Since the immune response of the body is already attenuated in diabetics, the risk posed by additional infections is much greater than in healthy individuals. This is exactly where Mr. Izaz Ahmad’s proposal sprouts hope. Izaz Ahmad is studying the effects of a potent vaccine made for the bacterial culprit responsible for such respiratory disease – bacteria Streptococcus pneumoniae. His study will measure impact of the body’s immune response to PCV10 (the vaccine under investigation) in individuals with type 2-diabetes and figure out whether these responses are comparable between individuals with and without type 2-diabetes. The study will be the first to demonstrate efficacy and immunogenicity of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine in those with type 2-daibetes in Pakistani population.
Cohort 2020 of SBA Fellows
Published work under SBARA funding:
Under the SBARA scholarship, the SBARA cohort of 2020 has successfully published the following articles:
1) A. Aslam and Z. Khalid, "Linear Transformations and Signal Estimation in the Joint Spatial-Slepian Domain," IEEE Signal Processing Letters, 2021, 28, pp. 1195-1199. DOI: 10.1109/LSP.2021.3086699
2) A. Aslam and Z. Khalid, "Spatial-Slepian Transform on the Sphere," IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing (Early Access)
3) A. R. Aslam, N. Hafeez, H. Heidari and M. A. B. Altaf, "An 8.62 μ W Processor for Autism Spectrum Disorder Classification using Shallow Neural Network," IEEE International Conference on Artificial Intelligence Circuits and Systems (AICAS), 2021, pp. 1-4, DOI: 10.1109/AICAS51828.2021.9458412
4) A. Aslam and Z. Khalid, “Overcomplete Multiscale Dictionary of Slepian Functions for HEALPix on the Sphere," submitted to IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing
5) A. Aslam and M. A. B. Altaf, " Machine learning-based patient-specific processor for the early intervention in autistic children through emotion detection,” Chapter 14, in " Neural Engineering Techniques for Autism Spectrum Disorder", Academic Press, 2021. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-822822-7.00014-4 (Book Chapter)
6) A. R. Aslam, and M. A. B. Altaf, “A 10.13µJ/classification 2-channel Deep Neural Network based SoC for Negative Emotion Outburst Detection of Autistic Children,” IEEE Trans. Biomed. Circ. Syst. (TBioCAS), Accepted, Sep. 2021. DOI: 10.1109/TBCAS.2021.3113613.
7) A. R. Aslam, N. Hafeez, H. Heidari and M. A. B. Altaf, "An 8.62 μ W Processor for Autism Spectrum Disorder Classification using Shallow Neural Network," IEEE International Conference on Artificial Intelligence Circuits and Systems (AICAS), Washington DC, USA, 2021, pp. 1-4. (Conference)
Adeem Aslam was nominated for IEEE SPS Best Ph.D. dissertation Award 2021
Abdur Rehman won IEEE Circuit and System Society (CAS) Pre-Doctoral Achievement Award 2021, Daegu, Korea.
- Cash Prize of USD 2500
Abdur Rehman also received Commonwealth Split-site Scholarship to support his twelve months research visit to Microelectronics Lab (MeLAB), University of Glasgow, UK.
- Research Grant of GBP 6000
- Conference Support
Syed Babar Ali Research Awards 2022-2023
The Syed Babar Ali (SBA) Research Awards Program recognizes and supports outstanding PhD students in the Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering, LUMS. The recipients of this award, called SBA Fellows, are expected to pursue research and scholarly activities that support knowledge creation and innovation in science and engineering as well as contribute to the economic well-being of society at large.
As part of this prestigious programme, SBA Fellows benefit from a monthly stipend of PKR 50,000 in addition to the stipend contribution from their PhD supervisors. Moreover, they are eligible to apply for additional research support (for example, for procuring equipment, consumables, covering research travel expenses, publication fee for journals etc.) from a central fund exclusively allocated for this program as discussed below.
Proposals for the SBA Research awards will be solicited from PhD students once a year, and will follow the following timelines:
• Proposals due: May 31, 2022
• Decisions announced: July 31, 2022
• Fellowship start date: September 1, 2022
Please click here to download complete policy.
How to apply
Application Process through GAMES (https://games.lums.edu.pk/):
Applications are invited through Grants Application, Management and Execution System (GAMES). Applicants must register themselves on GAMES. Office of Research (OR) will activate their profile within 24 hours. Once, the account is activated, applicants may login through complete email address (username). Password is the same that is used for accessing LUMS’ network.
You can access GAMES remotely outside of LUMS’ network through VPN.
You may prepare your proposal using the attached application form and then just copy the content from this form to application form provided in GAMES (Since the GAMES application form does not provide the facility of saving your partial application as of now – this facility will be included in future). You may also upload your word document (or PDF) along with your application through GAMES. This will help especially in cases where tables, diagrams and figures are part of the proposal.
Please go to Application Management ---> Apply for Grant --> Syed Babar Ali Research Award.
A walk through document about application process can also be accessed by clicking here. This link provides complete walk through of GAMES application in a simple yet comprehensive way.