Dr. Samar Layek
Assistant Professor (Selection Grade)
Dr. Samar Layek is recognized as one of the world's leading experts in the field of studying materials under extreme conditions of pressure, temperature, and magnetic fields. He holds an M.Sc. degree and a Ph.D. in Experimental Condensed Matter Physics from IIT Kanpur. With approximately 9 years of post-Ph.D. research and teaching experience, he has worked in renowned institutions such as Tel-Aviv University, University of Cambridge, and Institut Néel, CNRS, across three different countries. Dr. Layek has been a recipient of international fellowships and boasts an impressive portfolio of 45 publications in esteemed international journals indexed in SCI.
Prior to joining UPES, Dr. Layek was a Research Associate at the Institute Neel, CNRS, Grenoble, France, in the Superconductivity and Magnetism group. He has also worked at the Cavendish Laboratory, University of Cambridge, UK, and the School of Physics and Astronomy, Tel Aviv University, Israel, following the completion of his Ph.D. from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur.
Dr. Layek's research interests encompass a wide range of topics, including quantum materials, high-pressure studies using diamond anvil cells, phase transitions, materials under extreme conditions, magnetism and superconductivity, pressure engineering, Mössbauer spectroscopy, insulator-metal transition, nanomaterials, and more.
Dr. Layek firmly believes in an active learning process where learners actively reconstruct knowledge in their minds. As a teacher, his primary role is to create conducive conditions for effective learning, often achieved through engaging students with tabletop experiments and fostering an active classroom environment. He emphasizes organizing course material around fundamental ideas, encouraging deep understanding. Dr. Layek also designs exam problems that require both qualitative and quantitative analysis of physical phenomena, avoiding overly simplistic approaches like "equation hunting."
Throughout his career, Dr. Layek has taught various undergraduate and postgraduate courses, including Contemporary Research, Challenges and Trends (PhD; School of Engineering, 81 scholars), Condensed Matter Physics-II (M.Sc. Physics), Solid State Physics (BSc; General Physics), Engineering Physics (B.Tech.; Computer Science, 70 students), Physics (B.Tech.; Health Science, 46 students), Physics Laboratory (B.Tech.; Health Science, 41 students), Engineering Physics Laboratory (B.Tech.; Computer Science, 36 students), and more.
Awards and Grants
Dr. Layek's contributions have been recognized with numerous national and international research grants and awards. He received the PBC postdoctoral fellowship from 2013-2016 (3 years) awarded by the Higher Education Ministry, Israel, enabling him to work at Tel Aviv University, Israel. In 2017, he was honoured with the IUCR Young Scientist Bursary Award for participating in the IUCR 2017 conference at Hyderabad, India, sponsored by Tel Aviv University, Israel. Additionally, Dr. Layek received a travel grant from the Embassy of France in India in 2022 for a short research trip to Institut Néel, CNRS, France. His diligent work as a reviewer for various international journals has also been acknowledged with several certificates of recognition.
Dr. Layek's contributions extend to multidisciplinary projects at prestigious international institutions in Israel, the United Kingdom, and France. He played a pivotal role in discovering the site-selective Mott transition under extreme conditions of pressure and temperature, a groundbreaking experimental achievement. Presently, he supervises and co-supervises three research scholars at UPES. Collaborating with peers, he has published 45 research articles in SCI-indexed journals, accumulating a total citation count of 1305, with an h-index of 20 and an i-10 index of 30. Furthermore, Dr. Layek has been granted international scholarships and research funds to support his research-related visits abroad. His expertise is also sought-after, as evidenced by his peer-review contributions to 76 articles for renowned journals, including Nature Communications, Physical Review Letters, and Physical Review B. Dr. Layek has also delivered several invited talks at various international and national scientific platforms.