– By NUST Science Society
Dr. Noor Muhammad Butt, best known as Dr. N. M. Butt, was first of the few Pakistanis who have achieved a Doctor of Science degree in Physics.
Dr. N. M. Butt was born on the 3rd of June in Sialkot. After completing his early education from Murray College in 1950, he attended Punjab University, from where he received his B.Sc. in Applied Physics 5 years later. Subsequently, Dr. Butt completed his M.Sc. with specialization in Nuclear Physics from Government College University. After serving as a lecturer at the same institution for a year, he was graced with scholarships to pursue his doctoral studies abroad. Consequently, he completed his PhD at University of Birmingham, UK. Dr. Butt continued his work in the field of Nuclear Physics and finally became the first Pakistani to receive a D.Sc. degree, under the supervision Dr. Philip Burton Moon, in 1967.
After completing his education, Dr. Butt began simultaneously teaching and researching at the University of Birmingham. During his years abroad, Dr. Butt discovered the existence of India’s Nuclear Weapons’ Program, which he subsequently reported to Dr. Munir Ahmad Khan, the then Chairman of PAEC. He joined PINSTECH as the director general of Nuclear Physics Division. He is the first Scientist Emeritus at PAEC for his services to the Commission.
Dr. Butt’s work earned him the honor of receiving the ICTP award twice in 1970 and in 1979 and the Sitara-e-Imtiaz in 1992. He was the winner of 8th Khwarizmi International Awards, Iran, in 1995. Apart from serving as the head of Pakistan Science Foundation from 2005 to 2008, and as the Chairman of National Commission on Nano-Science and Technology (NCNST) from 2003 to 2008, Dr. Butt is a representative in Pakistan’s Council for meetings of Nobel Laureates. He aspires to build a brighter future for Pakistan by inspiring young scientists through these meetings.