Public Anger Mounts in India for Delay in Giving Nobel Prize in Chemistry to Professor Mrinal Thakur, a World Renowned Scientist

Public Anger Mounts in India for Delay in Giving Nobel Prize in Chemistry to Professor Mrinal Thakur, a World Renowned Scientist

New Delhi, March 26, 2023: The continued violation of academic norms for 22 long years by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (RSAS) in the case of Professor Mrinal Thakur now has snowballed into outbursts of public anger in India.

The people now are taking the issue to the streets to ensure that the justice is done in the case of Professor Thakur who discovered Nonconjugated Conductive Polymers and made path breaking discoveries in Nonlinear Optics, Nano-optics and several other fields of science.

Currently working as the Director of Photonic Materials Research Laboratory at Auburn University (USA), Professor Thakur was denied due credit in Nobel Prize for22 long years.

Through a press statement here, Professor Thakur requested the Prime Ministers of Sweden and India and the President of USAto take up the long pending issues with the RSAS to arrive at meaningful resolutions.

Though the RSAS is in agreement with Professor Thakur that the fundamental basis given in the document preserved for the 2000 Nobel Prize in Chemistry is incorrect / nonfactual, the RSAShas not taken stepsto make requisite corrections and accord due credit to Professor Thakur.

The 2000 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was given to Heeger, MacDiarmid and Shirakawafor the discovery of “Conductive Polymers”. The  RSAS only recognized the discovery of  “Conjugated” Conductive Polymers but denied recognition to the “Nonconjugated” Conductive Polymers discovered by  Professor Thakur. He made this discovery around the same timeas that of Heeger, MacDiarmid and Shirakawa. Here, the blatant violation of academic norms comes to light. Besides, this also turns a major issue of the human rights violation.

Though Professor Thakur was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for 22 times, he was not given it. To top it, the Chemistry Nobel Prize in 2014 was given to persons who plagiarized from Professor Thakur’sexperimental and theoretical works in nonlinear optics.

As it appears at the website of The Nobel Foundation,“ key property of a conductive polymer is the presence of conjugated double bonds along the backbone of the polymer. In conjugation, the bonds between the carbon atoms are alternately single and double.” Also, “For a polymer to be able to conduct electric current it must consist alternately of single and double bonds between carbon atoms”. These fundamental statements are nonfactual / incorrect since these disregard existence of “Nonconjugated” Conductive Polymers and their impact.

Professor Thakur used Coulomb Correlation theory which applies to both Nonconjugated and Conjugated Conductive Polymers while other theories developed only considering Conjugated Conductive Polymers may lead to incorrect conclusions. “Conjugated” conductive polymer indeed is a special case of “Nonconjugated” conductive polymer.

The Nobel Committee failed to follow their statutes (Statutes of The Nobel Foundation) in decisions on 2000 and 2014 Nobel Prizes in Chemistry. The relevant statute (1) goes as follows: the prize will go “to the person who shall have made the most important chemical discovery or improvement”. Can alleged “incorrect” or alleged “plagiarized” works be considered “most important chemical discovery”? Not really!

The research conducted by Professor Thakur proved the “Nonconjugated Conductive Polymers” can effectively absorb radioactive iodine emitted from nuclear reactors saving the Mother Earth. Millions of human lives, flora and fauna across the globe can be safeguarded by creating shields made of the Nonconjugated Conductive Polymers.

Mass deployment of such shields can protect the people against radiation poisoning and different ailments including thyroid cancer that radioactive iodine causes. Currently, there is a huge demand for the potassium-iodide pills throughout the European Union (EU) for fear of nuclear radiation due to the ongoing Ukraine-Russia war.

In the backdrop of this fear of nuclear war, the world leaders should try to impress upon the RSAS to recognize the radiation absorbing capacity of the “Nonconjugated” Conductive Polymer-based shielding technology. The global leaders must come forward in sealing all nuclear reactor facilities around the world with this protective shield to save human lives.

Dangers of Radioactive Iodine

Radioactive iodine can belethal. It poses danger to human lives, all animals, water resources and overall ecology as it remains in a state of vapor at ordinary temperature and can travel long distances over a very short time.

It not only causes thyroid cancer but a plethora of other very serious and life-threatening diseases. This danger can be minimized if Professor Thakur’s discovery is put in use for mass welfare. The world leaders can suggest application of the polymer shields on a mass scale around the nuclear reactors (standard and modular) and the nuclear waste facilities which store spent nuclear fuel rods.

All the countries having nuclear reactors should demand for global funds to meet the cost of safeguarding their facilities and press upon the global leaders to come forward to save the earth against nuclear radiation fallouts.

Wrath of Media Against the Royal Swedish Academy

Though the RSAS is in agreement with Professor Thakur, it is ignoring the demand of the Indian Press to correct the anomalies in its policies of not recognizing the proven results of the “Nonconjugated” Conductive Polymers discovered by Professor Thakur.

The Indian Press warned that there is deep public discontent over the following critical issues which have remained unaddressed:

  • No credit was given to Professor Thakur in 2000 Nobel Prize and afterwards for his discovery of “Nonconjugated Conductive Polymers.”
  • Royal Swedish Academy is yet to correct the document preserved at the Nobel Foundation website despite repeated requests. The document states a polymer must be conjugated to be electrically conductive – which is nonfactual and the corresponding theory as given is incorrect,
  • Professor Thakur’s research funding was abruptly stopped in 2003 as he brought up the incorrectness and inequity regarding the 2000 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
  • Professor Thakur stakes claim to the 2014 Nobel Prize in Chemistry as well since “Super-resolved Fluorescence Microscopy” (2014 Nobel in Chemistry)is primarily based on earlier nonlinear optical experimental and theoretical studies performed by Professor Thakur and colleagues on organic materials.

Professor Thakur did not receive credit in the 2000 Nobel Prize. Again in 2014, the Nobel Committee did not give him credit for his equation and the underlying fundamental experimental and theoretical works on nonlinear optics that were critical for super-resolved fluorescence microscopy!

Scientific Explanation of Thakur’s Equation

The 2014 Nobel Prize in Chemistry was awarded to Betzig, Hell and Moerner for their works on “Super-Resolved Fluorescence Microscopy.”

The central equation (Equation 3 in 2014 Nobel document) used in this work is based on nonlinear optics works and phase-space-filling model developed by Professor Thakur and coworkers. No reference of that is given in the 2014 Nobel document preserved at the Nobel Foundation website.

Detailed nonlinear optical coefficients as a function of wavelength, excited-state lifetimes, two-photon absorption and the detailed saturation dynamics have all been measured by Professor Thakur and coworkers using femtosecond-duration pulses and their theoretical interpretations have been established.The excited state lifetime as measured is about 1.8 ps. In the off-resonant domain the response is instantaneous.

As discussed in such reports, (phase-space filling model applied to PTS-polydiacetylene crystal), the fractional change in oscillator strength, δf/f is related to the number fraction of electrons (excitons) involved in the transitions is as given in the following: δf/f = – N/Nwhere Ns is the saturation density.

For organic materials, energy levels remain essentially unchanged when light is incident on it. Using the phase-space filling model as above verified by detailed experimental measurements (Thakur et al. 1985-88), the equation relating the resolution and laser light intensity (Thakur’s Equation) that one arrives at is Δ = λ/(2nsinα(1 + I/Is)1/2). Here Δ stands for resolution, I stands for laser light intensity, λ is wavelength, n is refractive index, α is semi-aperture angle and Iis saturation intensity. More details of the equation have recently appeared (Thakur, J. Macromol. Sci., PAC 2016 and references therein).

This is the central equation, Equation 3 given in page 5 of the 2014 Nobel document preserved at the Nobel Foundation website and is derived based on phase-space filling model and the statistics involved in the emission process. No reference for this equation was provided in that document. Professor Thakur received no credit from RSAS in 2014 Nobel Prize!

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