Forthcoming Seminars

Please note that the list below only shows forthcoming events, which may not include regular events that have not yet been entered for the forthcoming term. Please see the past events page for a list of all seminar series that the department has on offer.

Past events in this series
28 November 2019
Nikolaos Athanasiou

An archetypal phenomenon in the study of hyperbolic systems of conservation laws is the development of singularities (in particular shocks) in finite time, no matter how smooth or small the initial data are. A series of works by Lax, John et al confirmed that for some important systems, when the initial data is a smooth small perturbation of a constant state, singularity formation in finite time is equivalent to the existence of compression in the initial data. Our talk will address the question of whether this dichotomy persists for large data problems, at least for the system of the Relativistic Euler equations in (1+1) dimensions. We shall also give some interesting studies in (3+1) dimensions. This is joint work with Dr. Shengguo Zhu.

  • PDE CDT Lunchtime Seminar
29 November 2019
Brian Macey


The RON test is an engine test that is used to measure the research octane number (RON) of a gasoline. It is a parameter that is set in fuels specifications and is an indicator of a fuel to partially explode during burning rather than burn smoothly.

The efficiency of a gasoline engine is limited by the RON value of the fuel that it is using. As the world moves towards lower carbon, predicting the RON of a fuel will become more important.

Typical market gasolines are blended from several hundred hydrocarbon components plus alcohols and ethers. Each component has a RON value and therefore, if the composition is known then the RON can be calculated. Unfortunately, components can have antagonistic or complimentary effects on each other and therefore this needs to be taken into account in the calculation.

Several models have been produced over the years (the RON test has been around for over 60 years) but the accuracy of the models is variable. The existing models are empirically based rather than taking into account the causal links between fuel component properties and RON performance.


BP has developed intellectual property regarding the causal links and we need to know if these can be used to build a functional based model. There is also an opportunity to build a better empirically based model using data on individual fuel components (previous models have grouped similar components to lessen the computing effort)

  • Industrial and Interdisciplinary Workshops
29 November 2019

When cells migrate through constricting pores, there is an increase in DNA damage and mutations. Experimental observations show that this breakage is not due to mechanical stress. I present an elastic-fluid model of the cell nucleus, coupled to kinetics of DNA breakage and repair proposing a mechanism by which nuclear deformation can lead to DNA damage. I show that segregation of soluble repair factors from the chromatin during migration leads to a decrease in the repair rate and an accumulation of damage that is sufficient to account for the extent of DNA damage observed experimentally.

In the second part I will talk about how some types of cancer cells grow uncontrollably. Telomeres are DNA caps on the end of chromosomes and are shortened during each cell division. Tumour cells elongate their telomeres so that unlike healthy cells they do not undergo programmed death. I will show how some types of cancer cells can control microphase separation to form micelle-like structures with telomeres in the cores. This clustering of telomeres is a crucial step in the elongation process and understanding the physics involved can help us understand how this process could be disrupted.

  • Mathematical Biology and Ecology Seminar
29 November 2019
Dr Richard Earl and Dr Neil Laws

This session is particularly aimed at fourth-year and OMMS students who are completing a dissertation this year. The talk will be given by Dr Richard Earl who chairs Projects Committee. For many of you this will be the first time you have written such an extended piece on mathematics. The talk will include advice on planning a timetable, managing the  workload, presenting mathematics, structuring the dissertation and creating a narrative, providing references and avoiding plagiarism.


Add to My Calendar