Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering

Message from the Dean

Each year, the Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering (SBASSE) aims to deliver excellence in education, innovation, research, and engagement with the wider community. This year was no exception.

Highlights from our community engagement activities include Math Circles, which bring SBASSE faculty and school kids from across Pakistan together at events which show that mathematics is much more than just arithmetic. Our Research Internship in Science and Engineering (RISE) programme offers school students the chance to experience life as a scientist first-hand, by joining a research group for 3-4 weeks and working with a faculty member who serves as a mentor. SBASSE is also engaged in imparting online education to Palestinian undergraduate students who are victims of the terrible events there.

Recently, SBASSE has launched several important initiatives. The Department of Electrical Engineering and the Department of Computer Science are working on a new MS in the rapidly growing field of Artificial Intelligence (AI). This will be launched this Fall and has already attracted many applicants. Many of the courses will be offered on weekends, enabling enrolment by working professionals. Two further focused MS programmes in Digital and Embedded Systems and Power Engineering and Smart Grids were offered for the first time this year. This was also the first year that undergraduate minor degrees in Quantum Technologies and Robotics have been available, led by the Departments of Physics and Electrical Engineering respectively. Also, since a student’s connection to SBASSE shouldn’t end with graduation but rather be for life, we are actively growing our alumni communities – more on the Computer Science Department’s initiative in this regard later!

In 2023-24, SBASSE made several new appointments at the assistant professor level. We are happy to welcome Dr. Usman bin Shahid (Chemistry and Chemical Engineering), Dr. Muhammad Ali Siddiqi (Electrical Engineering), Dr. Naveed Anwar Bhatti (Computer Science) and Dr. Reza Abdolmaleki (Mathematics). Since the number of students studying BS Computer Science at SBASSE is increasing rapidly, the Computer Science Department has also appointed ten new Teaching Fellows, whom we look forward to welcoming in July 2024. As in previous years, our BS and MS students have been highly successful this year in gaining admission to top overseas graduate programmes.

On the research front, faculty members are actively addressing key societal challenges. A good example, which demonstrates the strength of SBASSE’s interdisciplinary approach, is recent work on the chemical functionalisation of optical fibres to develop biosensors for the rapid detection of tuberculosis (TB). This is a collaboration between Dr. Basit Yameen (Chemistry and Chemical Engineering), Dr. Imran Cheema (Electrical Engineering) and Dr. Shaper Mirza (Life Sciences). Our research covers both very fundamental and highly applied topics. For example, researchers from Electrical Engineering are developing green energy solutions for off-grid communities, while researchers in Physics have just published several papers on quantum information processing, including one where the first author was a BS student. Prof. Sabieh Anwar and colleagues in Physics have also recently produced a revised edition of their textbook Quantum Mechanics in the Single Photon Laboratory.

Research and innovation at SBASSE involves working closely with local, national, and international industrial partners, as well as with non-governmental organisations and other universities. International links are key to our success, and these include numerous visits to and from overseas institutes, as well as our participation in and organisation of conferences and workshops. The CIMPA Research School on Algebra and Algebraic Geometry for Applications, co-organised by the Department of Mathematics with extensive participation from leading international researchers was a very successful example of the latter.

SBASSE faculty have also achieved significant recognition for their research and other activities. For example, we congratulate Dr. Faheem Hassan Akhtar (Chemistry and Chemical Engineering) for winning the North American Membrane Society Young Membrane Scientist Award and Dr. Khurram Bashir (Life Sciences) for winning a EIHO (Significant Achievement) Award from the Japanese RIKEN research institute for his work related to stress tolerance in plants. We are proud that three out of five recipients of the recently announced Vice Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence in 2024, Dr. Abubakr Muhammad, Dr. Agha Ali Raza and Dr. Hassan Jaleel, are from SBASSE. Moreover, we congratulate Prof. Naveed Arshad on receiving the Presidential Pride of Performance award.

Dr. Walther Schwarzacher
Ahmad Dawood Chair and Dean,
Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering




Students on the Dean’s Honour List


PhD students expected to graduate in 2023-24


Computer Science and Information Systems


Engineering – Electrical and Electronics


Engineering and Technology

Syed Babar Ali Research Award (SBARA)

The Syed Babar Ali Research Awards (SBARA) programme recognises and supports potentially high-impact work being carried out by current PhD students in SBASSE. The recipients of this award 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. The award is sponsored by the Babar Ali Foundation.

A Comprehensive Techno-Economic Framework for Electric Vehicle Battery Swapping Stations

Student: Muhammad Osama Tarar
Supervisor: Dr. Ijaz Haider Naqvi
Department of Electrical Engineering

Mitigating Climate Change by Converting CO2 to Formic Acid

Student: Sabahat Asif
Supervisor: Dr. Irshad Hussain
Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering

Development of Precision Therapies for the Treatment of Head and Neck Cancer

Student: Zainab Nasir
Supervisor: Dr. Safee Ullah Chaudhary
Department of Life Sciences

Math Circles

LUMS Math Circles, a non-profit programme initiated by the Department of Mathematics at SBASSE in 2021, aims to promote math interest among school kids in Pakistan. These are aimed at students from different backgrounds from grades 6 to 12. With activities like problem-solving and mathematical modelling, participants gain a deeper understanding of the subject.

Research Internships in Science and Engineering (RISE)

RISE offers research-based internships where participants delve into intellectually stimulating research questions over 3-4 weeks. Under the mentorship of LUMS faculty members, students are embedded in research groups, immersing themselves in cutting-edge research in advanced laboratories.

Key Initiatives

CS Alumni Network (CAN)

The Computer Science Department has recently launched CAN to foster stronger connections with its alumni and enhance their engagement with their alma mater. Within just a month, the Computer Science Department has achieved remarkable success in engaging approximately 1,000 alumni through CAN. 11 distinguished alumni were appointed to the CAN Executive Board, serving as vital liaisons between industry and academia both locally and internationally.

Khalid and Mussarrat Aziz Research Grants for Planet Earth 2023

We congratulate the winners of the first cohort of the Khalid and Mussarrat Aziz Research Grants for Planet Earth: Dr. Nauman Zafar Butt (PKR 2 million over two years) and Dr. Abubakr Muhammad (PKR 1.5 million over two years). We would like to thank the international review committee, Drs. Khalid Aziz, James Wescoat, Dara Entekhabi, and Saleem Ali, who sifted through an excellent set of proposals.

Revitalised Physics Curriculum

SBASSE has revitalised its physics curriculum, emphasising both rigor and flexibility. By introducing a new course on Energy and Information, alongside adjustments to core offerings like Statistical Mechanics, students can now chart their own academic journey while embracing interdisciplinary perspectives. Additionally, revamped courses like Computational Physics and Seminars in Physics aim to enhance students’ analytical and communication skills. This initiative was spearheaded by Dr. Syed Moeez Hassan.


We welcomed five distinguished scientists:

- Dr. Abbis Jaffary, a clinical scientist
- Dr. Faisal Rehman, a leading radio astronomer
- Dr. Muhammad Awais Yunus, a mechanical engineer and innovator
- Dr. Basmaa Ali, a pioneer in integrative medicine and AI applications
- Dr. Nasir Raza Awan, a neurosurgeon and entrepreneur

The International Masters in Maths at SBASSE

The International Mathematics Master (IMM) programme is a collaboration with the International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP) in Italy. Designed to provide rigorous training in both fundamental and applied mathematics, the IMM prepares students for the challenges of a rapidly evolving global landscape and enhances our existing Master’s programme by incorporating co-teaching by international faculty.

X-Ray Diffraction Facility in Central Lab

This new addition has been added to facilitate research at the nanoscale. This equipment features high-resolution, X-ray reflectivity, small angle and rocking curve measurements. The installation has been made possible by generous support from donors. This valuable resource will be available to SBASSE and external researchers.


The launch of the Ferozsons’ Initiative for Research Excellence (FIRE) aims to revolutionise. Pakistan's public health landscape through training in clinical research. FIRE’s overarching objective is to develop a culture of high-quality research in clinical and population health sciences within Pakistan and the broader region.

Two Cultures Initiative

Through a generous donation from a well-wisher, SBASSE launched the Two Cultures Initiative, which is an interdisciplinary forum for scholars from the natural and social sciences, engineering, and the humanities to explore points of intersection between science, society, and culture.

SBASSE For Everyone

This initiative extends select courses to learners beyond LUMS. With a vision of citywide education, enthusiasts can now access our offerings as visiting students.

Advisory Board Meeting 2024

The Advisory Board convened from January 22-24, 2024, under the chairmanship of Prof. Hamid Zaman, to assess the recent advancements, accomplishments, and forthcoming initiatives within the School and University. Central discussions revolved around sustainability and prospective opportunities. The SBASSE community greatly appreciates the contribution and support from all members of the Advisory Board.

Groundbreaking Faculty Research

Awaz-e-Sehat: Empowering Maternal Healthcare

Dr. Maryam Mustafa (Principal Investigator) and Dr. Hassan Mohy Ud Din (Project Co-PI), Assistant Professors at SBASSE, are part of a collaborative project entitled Awaaz-e-Sehat: Empowering Maternal Healthcare with Voice-Enabled Electronic Record Management. Their research has been awarded a Grand Challenges grant – an initiative fostering innovation to solve pressing global health and development problems and funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Advancing User-Centric Information Security

In an era where users often overlook security concerns, the field of usercentric information security has emerged, addressing human behaviours influencing privacy and security. Dr. Katharina Krombholz from CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security and colleagues at SBASSE have won an EU-funded project focused on enhancing the computer science curriculum, with a spotlight on human security. Dr. Katharina had a highly productive six-week stay at LUMS that involved teaching and ongoing research, notably studying security threats faced by Pakistani content creators and influencers.

Awards, Fellowships, and Achievements

VC Teaching Excellence Awards 2023

SBASSE offers special recognition to Dr. Zafar Ayyub Qazi and Dr. Amir Faisal from SBASSE for clinching the Vice Chancellor’s (VC) Award for Teaching Excellence in 2023. Dr. Qazi’s teaching of computer networks, internet security, and informational privacy is marked by a blend of clarity, engagement, and rigour. Dr. Faisal pairs his profound knowledge of cell biology with captivating visualisations on the blackboard, depicting intricate biological pathways.

VC Awards for Service Excellence 2023

The Awards celebrate the dedication and exceptional contributions of staff members who work to create a thriving and supportive community. Muhammad Farooq Usman, Manager of Operations in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, was awarded the Vice Chancellor’s Award for Service Excellence.

Pride of Performance

Dr. Naveed Arshad, Associate Professor of Computer Science, was among the recipients of the prestigious Pride of Performance award. As the Director of the National Centre in Big Data and Cloud Computing, the founder of the Energy Informatics Group, and the Co-Director of the LUMS Energy Institute at SBASSE, Dr. Arshad has been at the forefront of advancing big data, cloud computing, and sustainable energy solutions in the region.

Advancing Cancer Research - DAAD Scholarship

Dr. Rahman Shah Zaib Saleem, Associate Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering at SBASSE, has been awarded an internationally competitive DAAD (Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst) scholarship grant by the German Academic Exchange Service. This grant will provide the resources and funding necessary to study different kinds of signalling proteins and kinases.

ISIF Award

Dr. Zartash Afzal Uzmi and team have won the ISIF Asia award at the Internet Governance Forum in Japan. Their work in establishing Internet Exchange Points in Pakistan has earned them this recognition.

Celebrating Promotions

Dr. Ali Ashher Zaidi

Department of Mathematics
Given tenure and promoted to Associate Professor

Dr. Suleman Shahid

Department of Computer Science
Given tenure and promoted to Associate Professor

Dr. Imdadullah Khan

Department of Computer Science
Given tenure and promoted to Associate Professor

Dr. Imran Cheema

Department of Electrical Engineering
Given tenure and promoted to Associate Professor

Dr. Shaper Mirza

Department of Life Sciences
Given tenure and promoted to Associate Professor

Dr. Imran Anwar

Department of Mathematics
Given tenure and promoted to Associate Professor

Dr. Muhammad Zaheer

Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
Given tenure and promoted to Associate Professor

Dr. Muhammad Tariq

Department of Life Sciences
Promoted to Full Professor

Dr. Falak Sher

Department of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
Promoted to Full Professor

Dr. Muhammad Ali Siddiqi

Joined the Department of Electrical Engineering as an Assistant Professor.

Dr. Haniya Azam

Appointed as the Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education.

Dr. Muhammad Hamad Alizai

Appointed as the new Chair of the Computer Science Department.

Student Highlights and Research

Visiting Fatima Fertilizer Company Limited (FFL) – Classroom to Industry

Chemistry and Chemical Engineering students visited Fatima Fertilizer Company Limited (FFL). FFL’s management provided details of fertilizer production methods, stressing stringent quality control. Insight into the daily routines of FFL workers was provided, after which students donned safety gear for a site tour, enhancing their understanding of industrial operations.

Showcasing Academic Excellence: Chemical Engineering Senior Year Projects

The projects are a culmination of four years of learning, and a testament to students’ resilience and dedication. Students showcased their research in a poster presentation. Projects spanned diverse fields, from process optimisation to environmental sustainability. Highlights included innovations in renewable methanol production, particulate emissions assessment, waste product utilisation for water treatment, and advancements in water desalination technology.

Honorific Fellowships in Basic Sciences

In the year 2023-24, a total of 20 students were awarded the Bilqees Mujeeb, Ahmed Zewail, Khawaja Dil Muhammad and Chandrasekhar Fellowships in the basic sciences (biology, chemistry, mathematics, and physics) funded from a generous donation from Packages Limited, honouring the 90th birthday of SBASSE founder, Syed Babar Ali.

International Researchers at SBASSE

As part of its international engagement, SBASSE welcomed Fargana Alizada, a scientific researcher and PhD student from Baku, Azerbaijan as part of LUMS’ joint venture with COMSTECH. Fargana gained hands-on training in materials characterisation techniques, working closely with Dr. Nauman Zafar Butt in the Central Lab.

Seminars, Workshops and Conferences

International Biophysics Workshop on Nanoscale Materials and Biological Physics

The fifth edition of the International Biophysics Workshop on Nanoscale Materials and Biological Physics was held at SBASSE, aimed to foster interdisciplinary collaboration among scientists from Pakistan and abroad. Structured into four sessions spanning two days, the workshop delved into topics such as Electromagnetic Nanoprobes, Microfabrication, Nanoparticles, and Neurophysiology. Dr. Shahid Khan, a founding member of SBASSE and the workshop’s host, provided a comprehensive exploration of electromagnetic radiation, emphasising its pivotal role in elucidating the intricacies of living organisms, even at the nanoscale, and its significance in medical diagnostics.

Training the Trainers: Life Sciences Workshop Series to Drive Research Advancements

Amidst personalised medicine and genetic engineering breakthroughs, the Department of Life Sciences organised two workshops, Mastering DNA Basics and How to Teach Genetics, as part of the Training the Trainers series. These sessions aimed to equip individuals involved in research and academia with essential expertise. By fostering proficiency in crucial areas of study, these workshops contribute to driving advances in the health and agricultural industries, ensuring that professionals are equipped to harness the potential of emerging technologies for societal benefit.

SBASSE Central Lab’s Hands-On Workshop

The Central Lab at SBASSE organised its second hands-on workshop on materials characterisation. It offered participants a unique opportunity to delve into advanced tools for material characterisation and microfabrication. From surface morphology to elemental composition, magnetic behaviour, and optical properties, attendees gained practical experience in various material analysis techniques.

Empowering Science Communication Workshop with Mr. Ehsan Masood

Mr. Ehsan Masood, Nature’s Bureau Chief, led a special 2-day workshop at LUMS. The workshop featured a guest lecture by Ms. Mohsina Asif, Lead Science Communicator at the Khwarizmi Science Society and organiser of the Lahore Science Mela. This workshop provided attendees with the tools and techniques necessary to convey complex scientific concepts to diverse audiences, fostering a culture of effective science communication within our academic community.


Fostering Partnerships for Educational Excellence

In collaboration with Teach for Pakistan (TFP), SBASSE facilitated connections between top talent and TFP cohorts through information sessions and participation in our career fair. TFP also supported our digital initiatives by sponsoring content on alumni activities and our magazine, The Particle.

We are collaborating with STEAM Pakistan, an initiative of the Ministry of Federal Education and Professional Training that aims to advance secondary school-aged girls’ access to Science, Technology and Engineering. Our year-long partnership facilitated STEAM clubs in government girls’ schools, fostering hands-on learning. Teachers led these clubs to align with the curriculum. Students visited SBASSE labs, engaged with lab staff, and explored ongoing research, enhancing their scientific exposure. Our collaboration extended to supporting outreach activities in interior Sindh and Baluchistan with the NOP centre.

RG Blue Communications generously sponsored six Electrical Engineering students and one department representative to attend Career Expo 2024 in Islamabad. The sponsorship covered travel, accommodation, and registration expenses. This support provided invaluable opportunities for our students to network, explore career prospects, and gain insights into the industry landscape.

Industrial Partnerships

The Innovation and Enterprise Cell at SBASSE, led by Associate Dean Dr. Tauqeer Abbas, is eager to connect with industry to foster innovation and drive commercialisation.

The MS in Digital Embedded Systems (DES) is tailored to equip students for the dynamic demands of the market. We are delighted to unveil the Semiconductor Industry Fellowships (SIF) programme initiated by 10xEngineers Technologies Private Limited. This fellowship will extend merit-based tuition fee assistance to selected students enrolling in the MS DES programme. Moreover, recipients may seize the added advantage of potential employment opportunities at 10xEngineers.

SBASSE signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Dr. Masood Pharmaceuticals. The MoU is intended, among other objectives, to foster increased educational activities among faculty and graduate students.

As a part of the Climate2Equal project, participants from Packages Group attended various full day training sessions on renewable energy, climate change and environment at SBASSE. The participants gained knowledge and abilities to contribute towards a greener future.