Lucas J.R.

BScEng(Ceylon), MSc(Manch), PhD(Manch), FIEE, CEng, FIE(SLanka), IPEng, MCS(SLanka)

Emeritus Professor
Department of Electrical Engineering
Faculty of Engineering
University of Moratuwa
Moratuwa 10400, Sri Lanka

Tel: +94-112640402
         +94-112650301 Ext:3213
Fax: +94-112650625

I was born in Colombo, Sri Lanka on 17 October 1947. From my young days, my parents Dr Anthony Lucas and Mrs Erin Lucas always encouraged me to study well and take part in extra curricular activities. My brother Nimal, and my sisters Marie, Srini and Iromi were always by my side.

I had almost my entire school education at St Joseph's College , Colombo , (except for an year or so spent at the Montessori at St Bridgets Convent, Colombo). I am proud to have risen to be a Josephian Prefect and the Captain of Table Tennis.

I am normally called by my friends and colleagues by my middle name Rohan. I started my engineering education at the Univerity of Ceylon at Peradeniya in October 1966. Based on my performance at the GCE (Advanced Level) examination, I was permitted to skip the first year and complete the four year degree course in August 1969, obtaining first class honours and second class honours (lower division) respectively in the two remaining examinations. I played for the University in Table Tennis; and for my hall of residence, Jayathilaka Hall, in many sports including Table Tennis and Cricket. I will always treasure these memories.

After a short stint as an Temporary Instructor at the Engineering Faculty at Peradeniya soon after graduation, I joined the Ceylon College of Technology at Moratuwa (presently upgraded to the University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka) on 13 March 1970, having been instilled by Professor Sam Karunaratne, who was the Head of the Department of Electrical Engineering for over thirty years. In October 1971 I proceeded to the United Kingdom on a UNESCO Fellowship for my postgraduate studies at the University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology (UMIST). In October 1972, I obtained my Master's degree (MSc) having successfully completed the relevant written examinations in Electrical Power Systems Engineering and defended the dissertation on Cross-bonded cables and analysis of non-linearities. In October 1974, I successfully defended the doctoral thesis on Representation of transformers in switching surge studies and obtained my PhD and returned to Moratuwa. I still place in high esteem Dr Keith Cornick who guided me through this period. I am fortunate to have been at St Anselm Hall throughout my studies in Manchester and for being able to Captain the Table Tennis team in my final two years. I was also a member of the Bridge team, and a regular Snooker player in the evenings.

In October 1981, I was awarded a Commonwealth Research Fellowship on which I continued my post-doctoral research with Keith Cornick in the Department of Electrical Engineering at UMIST for one year. My next sabbatical was in September 1989, where I accepted a Visiting Professorship for one year at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Manitoba, Canada and undertook research with Professor Peter McLaren. My visit was funded by the Manitoba HVDC Research Centre. The visit was very fruitful resulting in a large number of conference and other publications which greatly helped me in reaching my present position. I am extremely grateful to Peter for this opportunity. In May 1997 I visited the University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand on the prestigious Erskine Fellowship and remained there for about eight months and spent my time doing teaching and researh. During my time at Canterbury I was associated in my work with Professor Jos Arrillaga, Dr Chris Arnold and Dr Neville Watson. I spent the remaining four months of my sabbatical at the University of Auckland, New Zealand doing teaching and research associated with Dr Nalin Pahalawatta and Dr Udaya Annakkage.

In September 1999, my wife, daughter and I spent one month visiting some of the Universities in Melbourne, Brisbane and Wollongong in Australia and the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. We also spent a one week holiday at the Gold Coast during the visit.

Ramala and Roshanthi have accompanied me on my sabbatical visits. Roshanthi in particular gained a lot from these trips, especially as she was able to attend school in Canada and New Zealand for short periods, although her regular studies were temporarily interrupted.

I married Ramala (left inset) in May 1978, and we have a daughter Roshanthi (right inset) who was born in May 1980. Ramala who was employed at Hatton National Bank after leaving school gave up working when we got married.




Roshanthi studied at Holy Family Convent, Bambalapitiya from where she sat for her GCE (Advanced Level) examination in August 1999. She offered Applied Mathematics, Pure Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry and obtained an overall aggregate of 278 (out of 400) and was admitted to the University of Moratuwa as an undergraduate student in December 2000. She was selected for the high demand specialisation of Electronics & Telecommunications Engineering at the end of the first year. She graduated with First Class Honours on 1 November 2004.

Roshanthi also took part in the Drama It runs in a family conducted by the English Literary Association of the University during her first Semester at the Univeristy. She was also an active member of the Rotaract Club of the University and has helped in organising the "Are You Ready programme" for the graduands for 3 years and and ended up as the Community Services Director of the Club during her last year at the University. She likes to go swimming and also played tennis at the University. Roshanthi was employed as an Engineer at Suntel Ltd in its Corportate Technical Services Division for two years soon after graduation. She still manages to find time to take part in extra-curricular activities including playing badminton and taking part in Drama.

Roshanthi embarked on the prestigious MBA programme at the Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge. She obtained the MBA degree in October 2007, having done the Individual Project at the Global Fund in Switzerland.
From mid-December 2007, she has been employed at Dialog Telecom. Since then she has obtained the position of Strategic Officer at The Global Fund in Geneva, Switzerland and took up the appointment on 1 June 2008.

She got married to Lakshita Gunaratne in October 2010. After marriage she returned to Sri Lanka and is working for LIRNEasia.

In 2006, I was fortunate to enrol in the Toastmaster's International programme at the University of Moratuwa where I made my ice breaker on How I do things differently which will also give you some additional insight into my life.

I returned to Sri Lanka, after spending one year of sabbatical leave from October 2006 to October 2007 at the University of Manitoba in Canada, in collaboration with the Manitoba HVDC Research Centre, developing a small signal stability module for the well known PSCAD/EMTDC programme.

I completed 43 years of teaching at the University of Moratuwa (and its predecessors) on 13th of March 2013. I am scheduled to retire on September 30th 2013. I am presently writing my autobiography, and messages received from my former students and colleagues are prublished in the web

© Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Moratuwa, Katubedda, Moratuwa, Sri Lanka. 2012
Tel: +94 11 2650301 Ext:3200, Fax: +94 11 2650622