Arnab Rai Choudhuri
Department of Physics
Indian Institute of Science
Bangalore 560 012, India
Email: arnab[at]
Phone: 080-2360-3481 (Off), 080-2360-3664 (Res.)
Fax: 080-2360-2602

Research Interests :

I am a theoretical astrophysicist working on MHD problems in astrophysics--primarily related to the Sun, although I have worked on other astrophysical systems (AGNs, jets, accretion, pulsars) as well. I give below a list of selected publications, arranged under topics. The generation of solar magnetic fields by the dynamo process and the formation of sunspots by the buoyant rise of flux tubes are the two subjects on which I have written the maximum number of papers.

To read a non-technical account about some of the research being done in our group, click here.

I am a Fellow of the Indian Academy of Sciences and a Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences, India.

The Solar Dynamo and Our Code Surya :

The solar dynamo theory explains the origin of the sunspot cycle. Although it has the reputation of being a difficult subject, any person with a good background of mathematical physics at an advanced undergraduate level can actually learn it quite easily! In a Winter School in Kodaikanal during December 2006, I delivered a series of lectures giving a pedagogical introduction to solar dynamo theory. You can see my lecture notes by clicking here.

I and my students have developed a code named Surya (a Sanskrit word meaning the Sun) for solving the basic equations of solar dynamo theory. I have prepared a guide for using this code and made it public in 2005. If you are interested in using the code Surya, send a request to me through e-mail.

A Recent Honour :

One recent paper of ours (Choudhuri, Chatterjee and Jiang 2007, PRL 98, 131103) has been selected as "Editors' suggestion" in Physical Review Letters -- one of the world's highest honours for a physics paper.

Educational Background :

1974--1978             Bachelor's degree student, Presidency College, Calcutta University
            (B.Sc. with Physics Honours, 1978)
1978--1980             Master's degree student, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur
            ( Physics, 1980)
1980--1985             Doctoral degree student, University of Chicago
            (Ph.D. in Physics, 1985)
            Supervisor: Prof. E. N. Parker

Postdoctoral Job Experience :

1985--1987            Visiting Scientist, High Altitute Observatory,
            National Center for Atmospheric Research, Boulder, U.S.A.

Faculty Job Experience :

1987--1990            Lecturer, Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
1990--1996             Assistant Professor, Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
1996--2002            Associate Professor, Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore
2002--             Professor, Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore

Visiting Positions :

Summer 1989 : Visiting Scientist, Enrico Fermi Institute, University of Chicago.

Summer 1991 : Visiting Scientist, Department of Applied Mathematics, University of St. Andrews, Scotland.

August 1994--July 1995 (Sabbatical Leave) : Alexander von Humboldt Fellow at Kiepenheuer Institut für Sonnenphysik, Freiburg, Germany.

Summer 2000 : Visiting Professor, Department of Physics, Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana.

Summer 2002 : Alexander von Humboldt Fellow, Max-Planck-Institut für Aeronomie, Lindau, Germany.

November--December 2004 : Visting Professor, Isaac Newton Institute, Cambridge University, UK.

November--December 2004 : Visting Professor, Department of Astronomy, Eötvös University, Budapest, Hungary.

Summer 2006 : Visiting Professor, National Astronomical Observatories of China, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing.

Research Supervision :

I supervised the doctoral work of the following students:

The following students did parts of their doctoral dissertations with me while enrolled in other place:

Click here for full list of PUBLICATIONS

My Books:

Please click on the titles of these books to see descriptions of them at the website of Cambridge University Press, along with comments by several reviewers. My favourites amongst my papers :

A Recent Controversy :

Dikpati et al. (2005, A&A 437,699) have written a comment on our recent solar dynamo model and we have written a reply to that (Choudhuri, Nandy and Chatterjee 2005, A&A 437, 703). The original version of our reply was 3 pages long, which had to be reduced to 2 pages at the request of the Editor of A&A. To see the original uncut version of the reply, click here.

Impact of my work :

My h index is 23 (as of 1 January 2010).

Several of my papers have made big impacts in the field and are cited frequently. The relevant data can be easily obtained at the website of Astrophysics Data Service (ADS) (the address of the website is As of 1 January 2010, there are about 1800 total citations to my works. Some of the most highly cited papers, with the number of citations according to ADS (as of 1 January 2010), are: