I will first review the salient features of knot theory. Chern-Simons field theory, which is a topological quantum field theory, provides a natural framework for the study of knots, links and three-manifolds. Then, I will discuss the computation of knot invariants from Chern-Simons field theory. I will highlight the powerfulness of the Chern-Simons invariants in comparison to the well-known polynomials in the knot theory literature.
Prof. Ramadevi obtained her M.Sc in Physics from IITMadras in the year 1991 and then she moved on to receive her PhD from the Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Chennai in the year 1996. She then worked as a postdoc in TIFR, Mumbai and HRI, Allahabad. Since 1999, she is at IITBombay where she is currently a full-professor in the department of Physics. Prof. Ramadevi's research interests include Chern-Simons field theory, Knot invariants, topological strings and supersymmetric field theories. She is an expert teacher. She has received IIT Bombay best teacher award for the year 2017 and the best research paper award in 2016. She has authored several popular science articles in the journal ‘Resonance’ and she has offered a couple of courses on the NPTEL portal. She has also published a undergraduate level textbook on ‘Group theory’ (Cambridge university press). ------ ABOUT DR LAKSHMI RAMAN (1947-2014): Dr Lakshmi Raman was educated at Lady Sivaswamy Iyer Girl’s high school, Mylapore and Queen Mary’s college, Chennai, before undertaking a PhD in crystal dynamics in the department of Physics, IITM. She did post-doctoral research at MPI, Stuttgart, ETH, Zurich and the University of Texas, Austin. Dr Raman then moved to the private sector. She had a long association with BellCore (a.k.a. Bell Labs) where she worked in the sphere of telecommunications particularly in the area of network management. She was an internationally recognized expert regarding standards in telecommunication. She was the author and coauthor of books and network management. Throughout her life she had a keen interest in the higher education of women and volunteer teaching of high-school students.