Schools Menu

Univen Newsletter

Mission and Vision

The Department of physics is committed to offering high quality programmes and strives to produce scholars in the field of science and technology. It seeks to contribute to the advancement of multidisciplinary research that will enhance the development of the region and the nation at large and to provide an environment where quality teaching and research in physics can flourish. It endeavors to pursue and create opportunities to render service to the university and the surrounding commmunities.

Overview
Enrolment of first-year students into the mainstream physics programmes has experienced an upward trend over the years. Service course students from the various science schools outside our own school of Mathematical and Natural Sciences enrol for modules in the  department. These are Health, Environmental Science and Agriculture and Forestry.


In the main stream the enrolment increased over the period 2000 to 2010 from 100 to 200. During the same decade, the number of second-year students rose from an average of 30 to 70. However, the service-course enrolment has remained roughly steady at about 280.


The big increase in the case of first-year physics majors has been mainly due to a large number of students from the School of Education who have been granted bursaries by the provincial Department of Education in the campaign to recruit more mathematics and physical science teachers for the high schools.


The department has four undergraduate laboratories. The largest of them is dedicated to the use of our 1st-year students whose numbers of late have been hovering in the range 160-180. The second is an optics lab, mainly for the 2nd years. The third lab is meant for various categories of experiments at the second-year level, apart from optics. The fourth is dedicated to the final year undergraduate experiments.


The department also has a research laboratory for exclusive use of the honours and masters students who pursue research in solar energy. In renewable energy research many pieces of equipment are used for outdoor field study and located at the Vuwani Science Resource Centre some 50 km away from the main campus.


History of the Physics Department


The Physics Department was established in 1985, with Prof DS Emmerson as head. He was assisted by AM Gohil who was to remain for the next twenty four years on the academic staff. Initially the department offered four-year  programmes but these were subsequently reduced to three-year programmes. The Honours, MSc and PhD programmes were developed in 1999 following the new SAQA, CHE and DoE guidelines.


Univen pays special attention to students unprepared for university. In study fields of an applied nature (like Physics), Univen puts special emphasis on training students to solve problems.

Staff  of the Physics Department in 2011. Standing l to r: Prof V Sankaran, Dr D Tinarwo, Mr L Jhamba, Dr JK Kirui and Mrs TS Mulaudzi. Sitting l to r: Mr F Nemangwele, Mr VM Nekhubvi and Dr NE Maluta.


Full Time Physics Academic Staff
Below is a list of the lecturing staff members of the physics department, in chronological order of appointment. For each, the period of tenure and the final or current teaching position is indicated.

Staff members of the physics department
Prof DS Emmerson 1985- 1986 Professor
Prof AM Gohil 1986 – 2009 Associate Professor
Prof  IP Matamba 1992 – 2008 Associate Professor
Mr VM Tshivhase       1992 – 1999 Lecturer
Prof V Sankaran 1998 - 2008 Professor
Mr GD Djolov 1998 – 2003 Associate Professor
Mr OO Nubi 1999 – 2000 Lecturer
Dr JK Kirui 2008 – to date Senior Lecturer
Mr KP Mutshena 2003 – 2007 Junior Lecturer
Mr L Jhamba 2008 – to date Lecturer
Dr D Tinarwo 2008 – to date Lecturer
Mr F Nemangwele 2010 – to date Lecturer
MrsTS Mulaudzi 2010 – to date Junior Lecturer

 

After the first HoD, Professor Emmerson (1985), Dr AM Gohil became the HoD during 1986 -1996, who was succeeded by Dr IP Matamba for the period 1996-1999. Prof V Sankaran took over as HoD for the next eight years (1999-2007), after which he relinquished the headship in order to devote his energies to running the Vuwani Science Centre. Prof AM Gohil then again took over from 2007-2008, after which Dr JK Kirui became the current HoD from January 2009.

 

The following modules are offered in the Department of Physics:

Undergraduate Modules
PHY 1521 Mechanics
PHY 1522 Waves and Optics I
PHY 1525 Physics for Natural ( Biological and Health ) Sciences I
PHY 1527 Physics for Environmental and Agricultural Sciences I
PHY 1623 Properties of Matter and Thermal Physics
PHY 1624 Electricity and Magnetism
PHY 1625 Physics for Natural ( Biological and Health ) Sciences II
PHY 1627 Physics for Environmental and Agricultural Sciences II
PHY 2521 Classical Mechanics
PHY 2522 Waves and Optics II
PHY 2623 Electrodynamics
PHY 2624 Modern Physics
PHY 3521 Atomic and Nuclear Physics
PHY 3522 Solid State Physics
PHY 3525 Energy Physics
PHY 3623 Thermal and Statistical Physics
PHY 3624 Quantum Mechanics
PHY 3626 Electronics
PHY 3627 Research Project

Higher Degrees (Honours, Masters and Doctoral)

Honours Programme Modules

Prerequisite

An average of 60% in Physics third year modules or its equivalent gained elsewhere with sufficient mathematics background. In marginal cases, additional selection criteria will be used to admit a student into honours programme.

Duration

The Honours programme extends over a period of one year of full-time study or a period of two years of part-time study. The Department offers honours programme in solar energy and in theoretical physics. In order to qualify for the degree a student must pass at least eight modules. The core modules and optional modules offered in an academic year vary depending on the staffing situation in the department. The students are advised to consult the head of the department about the modules offered for different specialization.

Honours Programme Modules
PHY 5521 Classical Mechanics (core)
PHY 5522 Quantum Mechanics I (core)
PHY 5523 Solid State Physics I (core)
PHY 5524 Renewable Energy
PHY 5525 Mathematical Methods of Physics
PHY 5526 Laser Physics I
PHY 5527 Electronics
PHY 5621 Electrodynamics (core)
PHY 5622 Statistical Mechanics (core)
PHY 5623 Project (core)
PHY 5624 Solid State Physics II . Prerequisite: PHY5523
PHY 5625 Quantum Mechanics II. Prerequisite: PHY5522
PHY 5626 Laser Physics II. Prerequisite: PHY5526
PHY 5627 Nuclear and Particle Physics. Prerequisite: PHY5522

Masters Programme
PHY 6000 Research Project
Prerequisite Satisfactory completion of B.Sc. (Hons) in Physics or any other equivalent qualification

Doctorate Programme
PHY 7000 Research Project
Prerequisite Satisfactory completion of M.Sc. in Physics or any other equivalent qualification

The following is a list of publications and research done by staff members of the Department of Physics:


Dr. Sankaran

1. NE Maluta, TS Mulaudzi  and V Sankaran 

Estimation of Global Solar Radiation on Horizontal Surface from Temperature Data for Vhembe District in Limpopo Province, South Africa.
Accepted for publication in International Journal of Green Energy. (2013) (In press)

2. T.S. Mulaudzi, V. Sankaran and M.D. Lysko. Solar radiation analysis and regression coefficients for Vhembe Region of Limpopo province in South Africa, (Revised version sent for publication to Journal of energy in South Africa, (2013)).

3. N. E. Maluta and V.Sankaran Outdoor testing of amorphous and crystalline

solar panels at Thohoyandou.Journal of Energy in Southern Africa- Vol 22 No.3, 16, (2011).

4. V. Sankaran, Renewable energy". A chapter in the book on “Green Chemistry in Africa” published by IUPAC & ANCA, Italy.  ISBN: 8888214070, Pages 121 – 136, (2008).

5.  V. Sankaran. Technology transfer for poverty reduction in energy sector. Technical report to DST/CSIR. (2006).

Conferences and conference proceedings

1.          Estimation of Global Solar Radiation on the Horizontal Surface from the Temperature Data for Vhembe District in Limpopo Province, South Africa. T.S. Mulaudzi, E.N. Maluta and V. Sankaran Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012)


2.          Evaluation, Sizing and Cost Analysis of a PV array for Rural Development in Vuwani area, Vhembe District, Limpopo, South Africa
E. N. Maluta, N. Nkhumeleni, T.S. Mulaudzi and V. Sankaran Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012)


3.         Analysis of the peak power of a photovoltaic array system under outdoor conditions V M Nekhubvi and V Sankaran Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012)


4.        Characteristics Evaluations and Analysis of a Photovoltaic Module under Partial Shaded   Conditions F. Nemangwelea, N.E. Maluta, and V. Sankaran
Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012).


5.         Analysis of the solar radiation data and determination of the regression coefficients for the Vhembe region of Limpopo province, south Africa.
            T.S. Mulaudzi, V. Sankaran and M.D. Lysko 57th annual SAIP conference at University of Pretoria, Page 126 (2012


6.         Measuring multiple components of solar energy, MD Lysko, TS Mulaudzi, U Feister and V Sankaran. 4th IUPAP International conference on Women in Physics at Cape Town , Page 213, (2011).


7.         Effect of shading on the performance of a photovoltaic module. K.P. Mutshena, M.N. Khwanda, N.E. Maluta and V. Sankaran.   South African Institute of Physics National conference proceedings and abstracts, Page 134, (2005).


8.        Onsite measurement on crystalline and amorphous PV modules at   Thohoyandou.N. E. Maluta and V.Sankaran, Presented at the SAIP conference at University of Pretoria during 5-7 July 2005. 


9.         The performance of photovoltaic modules at the experimental site. N. E. Maluta and V. SankaranSouth African Institute of Physics National conference proceedings and abstracts,  Page 136, (2003).

back to top

Dr. Matamba

  • Diquark-Quark Model. Proceedings of the South African Institute of Physics, July 1993.

  • Photo-excitation of the nucleon and the delta. Symposium on Effective Interactions in Quantal Systems, Unisa, December 1994.

  • Photoexcitation of the baryon. Proceedings of the South African Institute of Physics conference, July 1995.

  • Importance of mixed Symmetry State in the Photoexcitation of the three Quark System. Proceedings of the South African Institute of Physics conference, July 1996.

  • Non-relativistic diquark-quark model for the baryon spectrum. SA Journal of Science, Vol 93, 1997.

  • Photoexcitation of the nucleon in the constituent quark model. Nuovo Cimento, Italy, Vol 111A, N.1, 1998.

back to top

Mr. Kirui

J.K .Kirui, J.A. van Wyk, and M.J.R. Hoch, Dynamics of negatively charged divacancy centers in neutron irradiated type Ib diamond (ACCEPTED on 15 Aug 2013 for publication in Diamond and Related Materials )

D. C. Hunt, D. J. Twitchen, M. E. Newton, J. M. Baker, J. K. Kirui, J. A. van Wyk, T.  R. Anthony, and W. F. Banholzer . EPR data on the self-interstitial complex O3 in diamond Phys. Rev. B 62, 6587-6597 (2000)

 

J. K. Kirui, J. A. van Wyk and M. J. R. Hoch  ESR studies of the negative divacancy in irradiatedtype-Idiamonds 
Diamond and Related Materials, Volume 8, Issues 8-9, 1999, Pages 1569-1571

JK Kirui, C L Ma, D Weih and C F Schwerdtsfeger
ESR study of DMTM(TCNQ)2   Solid State Communications, Volume 74, Issue 6, May 1990, Pages 451-453

Conferences and Conference Proceedings

The 6th EBASI International Conference on Physics and technology for Sustainable development ( EBASI2007); iThemba Labs, Cape Town Jan.22-26 2007
Participation:Poster presentation of a paper titled: “Vacancy-associated EPR centres in     irradiated type Ib diamond”

International Conference on the Defects of Insulating Materials, Midrand, Johannesburg, 2000 Participation: Oral presentation of a paper titled: “The negative divacancy in diamond
International Symposium on New Diamond Structure and Technolog 31 August – 4 September 1998, Pretoria
Participation:Poster presentation of a paper titled: “The ESR centres in diamond

Diamond Conference, University of London, Holloway July 1998
Participation: Oral presentation of a short paper: “Some radiation defects in type Ib diamond

NRF/DST Centres of Excellence Conference, Pretoria 13 November 2012
Nominated to prepare and present  a NITheP stakeholder talk  which was subsequently given  on my behalf  by Dean of Mathematical and Naturals Sciences, Prof JE Crafford
45th South African Institute of Physics Conference, RAU 2000
Participation: Oral presentation entitled: “Linewidths, Spin Relaxation and   
Power Saturation of some Vacancy- associated EPR Centres in Type Ib  Diamonds”

44th South African Institute of Physics Conference, UPE  1999
Participation: Oral presentation entitled: “Negative Divacancy EPR Centre in Irradiated Diamond”.

42nd   South African Institute of Physics Conference, UD Westville 1997
Participation: Poster presentation entitled: “EPR studies of Irradiation Damage Centres in Diamond”

Other interests:

Learning Languages of Southern Africa  especially Tshivenda, Xitsonga, Sepedi and isiZulu.

back to top

 Dr D Tinarwo

  • R. Mukaro and D. Tinarwo, “Performance evaluation of a hot-box reflector solar cooker using a microcontroller-based measurement system”, International Journal of Energy Research, Volume 32, Issue 14 , pp1339 – 1348

  • R. Mukaro, B. M. Taele and D. Tinarwo, “In situ measurement of the energy gap of a semiconductor using a microcontroller-based system” European  Journal of Physics, Volume 27, Number 23, page 531-538,   2006

 

Books and Techical reports

  • D. Tinarwo, “Design of village power and micro-grids for rural areas of Zimbabwe

     with specific attention to voltage regulation on low voltage meshed distribution
    grids”, PhD Theses, Kassel University Press GmbH, Kassel 2009.

  • D. Tinarwo et al. “Implications of line parameters on Microsource controller algorithms”. A technical report on the Deliverable DA5: “Microsource local controllers capable to deal with resistive and inductive coupling of interconnecting lines” of the EU project: Advanced Architectures and Control Concepts for MORE MICROGRIDS, ContractNo: SES6-019864, 2009http://www.microgrids.eu/documents/636.pdf)

Conferences and Conference proceedings

 Potential of waste to useful energy conversion in rural community set-up: Case of Mepuzi community Biogas project in rural communities of Chicualacuala Mozambique. June 2010, Kassel, Germany

 African Union Conference of Ministers In Charge Of Energy 1-5 November 2010 Maputo, Mozambique.

International Energy and Power Conference and Exhibition 27 - 29 September 2011, Rainbow Tower Hotel, Harare (In Zimbabwe’s First International Energy and Power Conference and Exhibition 27 - 29 September 2011, : attended as a guest speaker.)

Global South-South Development Expo of the United Nations (GSSD 2011),  December 2011, Rome, Italy, 2011

 DAAD Alumni Summer-School, June 2012, Cottbus, Germany

 Renewable energy workshop, Limpopo LED Resource Centre, Pietersburg Club 12th  February 2013

Developing a Green Economy: Renewable Energy, Climate Change and Social Justice, 19th – 20th February 2013, UNISA, PRETORIA

 

Present projects


Presently he is principal researcher on two collaborative research projects:

“Improving the livestock carrying capacity with rainwater harvesting and conservation on grasslands for extensive and/or intensive livestock production and biogas generation from manure in rural areas of South Africa”, (collaborating with Universities of KwaZulu Natal, and Rhodes with Agama Biogas Technology company – funded by the Water Research Commission of South Africa”.


“Towards a Technology Specific Innovation System for Harnessing Waste-Based Bioenergy” from South Africa’s “Global Change Grand Challenge National Research Plan,” of the Department of Science and Technology’s “Global Change, Society and Sustainability Research Programme”.  Funded by the Department of Science and Technology and managed by the National Research Fund.

    back to top

    Mr L Jhamba

    • Jhamba L and Chagwedera S “Estimation of Solar Radiation from Meteorological Parameters.  Paper published in the Research Council of Zimbabwe Journal, Volume IIIB Proceedings of Third Symposium on Science and Technology – Innovation, Self-Reliance and Development, 6 – 8th October 1992).

      Chiguvare Z, Jhamba L and Wamwangi D, Charge injection at metal – polymer interfaces: an experimental investigation into why the efficiency of organic solar cells is low at high incident light intensities. – In Press.

    • Conference and Conference proceedings

    • The 2012 annual South African Institute of Physics at the University of Pretoria from 9th July to 13th July 2012 . Gave oral presentation of the paper entitled “Charge injection at metal polymer interfaces.”.

    • UNESCO Forum on Higher Education, Research and Knowledge – Second Regional Research Seminar for Africa 22-24 March2007 in Accra, Ghana.
      Attended the MERCK (Pty) Ltd seminar on Laboratory Safety and Chemical Grades at the University of the Witwatersrand Medical School – 14th September 2011. (Ref. attached certificate)

    • Attended Photonic workshop for the inclusion of Laser Physics modules at undergraduate and honours levels in South Africa’s universities. The workshop was held CSIR in Pretoria (2011).

    • Attended one day workshop (CSIR-Photonics Division) on Photonics curriculum development and implementation. (May 2012)
      Attended the Attachment Programme (24 November 2003 to 03 December  2003) hosted by The Southern African Development Community (SADC) Regional Education Programme and The Wildlife and Environment Society of Southern Africa. The attachment was at Umgeni Valley, Howick, South Africa.

    • Other Research Interests

    • Utilisability – Photovoltaic concentrators

    • Economic Analysis of Renewable Energy Systems

    • Grid–connected Photovoltaic Concentrator Systems

    • Potentialities of Wind, Geothermal and Wave Energy

    back to top

    Mr F. Nemangwele

      Research Interests:


      Enviromental and Nuclear Radiation


      Conferences and conference proceedings


      Characteristics Evaluations and Analysis of a Photovoltaic Module under Partial Shaded   Conditions
      F. Nemangwelea, N.E. Maluta, and V. Sankaran
      Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012).

back to top

Dr NE Maluta

1. In Situ Detection of Free and Trapped Electrons in Dye-Sensitized Solar Cells by Photo-Induced Microwave Reflectance Measurements Halina K. Dunn, Laurence M. Peter, Stephen J. Bingham, E. Maluta, and Alison B. Walker The Journal of Physical Chemistry C2012116 (41), 22063-22072

2. E. Maluta and V. Sankaran. "Outdoor testing of amorphous and crystalline silicon solar panels at Thohoyandou." Journal of Energy in Southern Africa 22.3 (2011): 17.

Conference and Conference proceedings


1.         Estimation of Global Solar Radiation on the Horizontal Surface from the Temperature Data for Vhembe District in Limpopo Province, South Africa.
T.S. Mulaudzi, E.N. Maluta and V. Sankaran
Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012)

2.          Evaluation, Sizing and Cost Analysis of a PV array for Rural Development in Vuwani area, Vhembe District, Limpopo, South Africa
E. N. Maluta, N. Nkhumeleni, T.S. Mulaudzi and V. Sankaran
Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012)

3.        Characteristics Evaluations and Analysis of a Photovoltaic Module under Partial Shaded   Conditions
F. Nemangwelea, N.E. Maluta, and V. Sankaran
Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012).

4.         Effect of shading on the performance of a photovoltaic module.
K.P. Mutshena, M.N. Khwanda, N.E. Maluta and V. Sankaran.   South African Institute of Physics National conference proceedings and abstracts, Page 134, (2005).

5.        Onsite measurement on crystalline and amorphous PV modules at  
          Thohoyandou.   N. E. Maluta and V.Sankaran, Presented at the SAIP
          conference at University of Pretoria during 5-7 July 2005. 

6.         The performance of photovoltaic modules at the experimental site.
N. E. Maluta and V. SankaranSouth African Institute of Physics National conference proceedings and abstracts,  Page 136, (2003).

 

back to top

Mrs TS Mulaudzi

    NE Maluta, TS Mulaudzi  and V Sankaran 
    Estimation of Global Solar Radiation on Horizontal Surface from Temperature Data for Vhembe District in Limpopo Province, South Africa.
    ACCEPTED for publication in International Journal of Green Energy. (2013)

    T.S. Mulaudzi, V. Sankaran and M.D. Lysko. Solar radiation analysis and regression coefficients for Vhembe Region of Limpopo province in South Africa, (Revised version sent for publication to Journal of energy in South Africa, (2013)).

    Conferences and Conference Proceedings

    Evaluation of solar irradiance in the selected locations in the Vhembe district of the Limpopo province of South Africa.
    T.S. Mulaudzi, V. Sankaran and E.N. Maluta

    Energy Post-graduate conference (EPC 2013) (Page 55) at iThemba labs, Cape Town (2013).
    Certificate award: Best Oral Presenter.

    Evaluation of different models for the computation of regression coefficients to arrive at the global solar radiation data in the climatic condition of Vhembe district of Limpopo in South Africa.
    E.N. Maluta, F. Nemangwele, L. Takalani, T.S. Mulaudzi and  V. Sankaran
    Energy Post-graduate conference 2013 (Page 64) at iThemba labs, Cape Town
    (2013)

    Estimation of Global Solar Radiation on the Horizontal Surface from the Temperature Data for Vhembe District in Limpopo Province, South Africa.
    T.S. Mulaudzi, E.N. Maluta and V. Sankaran
    Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012)

    Evaluation, Sizing and Cost Analysis of a PV array for Rural Development in Vuwani area, Vhembe District, Limpopo, South Africa
    E. N. Maluta, N. Nkhumeleni, T.S. Mulaudzi and V. Sankaran
    Proceedings of ASSAF conference (CD), Pretoria (2012)

    Analysis of the solar radiation data and determination of the regression coefficients for the Vhembe region of Limpopo province, south Africa.
    T.S. Mulaudzi, V. Sankaran and M.D. Lysko
    57th annual SAIP conference at University of Pretoria, Page 126 (2012

    Measuring multiple components of solar energy, MD Lysko, TS Mulaudzi, U Feister and V Sankaran. 4th IUPAP International conference on Women in Physics at Cape Town , Page 213, (2011).

    Other interests:
    Material Sciences

back to top

The following is a list of staff members in the Departmen of Physics:

Designation Name Contact Details
HOD Dr. J. K.Kirui
Tel: +27 15 962 8522
Email: kirui@univen.ac.za
Prof. V. Sankaran
Tel: +27 15 962 8369
Email: vaith@univen.ac.za
Dr. D. Tinarwo
Tel: +27 15 962 8918
Email: david.tinarwo@univen.ac.za
Mr. L. Jhamba
Tel: +27 15 962 8908
Email: Lordwell.Jhamba@univen.ac.za
Mr. F Nemangwele
Tel: +27 15 962 8276
Email: Nemangwele@univen.ac.za
Mrs TS Mulaudzi
Tel: +27 15 962 8390
Email: sophie.mulaudzi@univen.ac.za
Mr. E. P. Maluta
Tel: +27 15 962 8162
Email: eric.maluta@univen.ac.za