Thursday, 28 November 2013

Oxford Mathematicians work with collaborators from across the world on photovoltaics


Dr Victor Burlakov and Professor Alain Goriely from Oxford, together with colleagues from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) and the University of Toronto have been working on the automated synthesis of photovoltaic-quality colloidal quantum dots (CQDs) using separate nucleation and growth stages. CQDs need to be of high quality and narrow size distribution for the next generation of efficient solar cells and optoelectronics. The researchers' work features on the cover of the latest edition of ACS Nano where they report the scalable and automated synthesis of CQDs using a flow reactor and create dots that are on par in quality and photovoltaic device performance with the best small-scale batch synthesized CQDs.

Friday, 22 November 2013

Oxford Mathematics to train the next generation of mathematicians for industry and academia

Oxford Mathematics is delighted to announce that it is to host two of the newly created Centres for Doctoral Training (CDT) announced today by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC).

Oxford Centre for Doctoral Training in Industrially Focused Mathematical Modelling

Oxford University’s Mathematical Institute has a long tradition of mathematical modelling and scientific computing. The CDT in Industrially Focused Mathematical Modelling, directed by Professor Colin Please and Dr Chris Breward, will train the next generation of applied mathematicians to fill critical roles in industry and academia. The students will become adaptable problem-solvers armed with a breadth of cutting-edge mathematical techniques and outstanding communication skills.

The Centre currently has 35 partner companies, spanning SMEs to multinationals, who are actively involved in designing, delivering and supporting the Centre’s training and research. After a first year of intensive training, the students will pursue a research project aligned with a company so that all aspects of CDT research have immediate impact. We have 11 fully funded studentships to award for a 2014 start. Four of these have no nationality restrictions and we welcome applicants from across the globe.

Oxford Centre for Doctoral Training in Partial Differential Equations

Partial differential equations (PDEs) are at the heart of many scientific advances. The behaviour of every material object in nature, with time scales ranging from picoseconds to millennia and length scales ranging from sub-atomic to astronomical, can be modelled by deterministic and stochastic PDEs or by equations with similar features. The role of PDEs within mathematics and in other sciences is thus fundamental and is becoming increasingly significant.  

This CDT's comprehensive research programme will enable students to learn theory, analysis and applications in a variety of fields in a coherent manner, with a natural progression, by-passing a traditionally separate 'pure' or 'applied' approach to learning.

The CDT, directed by Professor Gui-Qiang Chen (Director) and Professors Sir John Ball and Endre Süli (Co-Directors), will offer a 4-year D.Phil. programme with the central aim of producing highly trained, outstanding mathematicians with deep expertise and interdisciplinary skills in the analysis and applications of PDEs and related areas of core mathematics and its interfaces, who will help drive scientific advances over the next fifty years. 

We seek mathematics graduates with a first class degree or other evidence of outstanding potential. We also encourage highly motivated and mathematically capable students with a degree in the physical sciences and engineering to apply.  We have 10 fully funded studentships to award for a 2014 start; at least two of them have no nationality restriction.

Friday, 22 November 2013

Dr Chris Breward wins an Oxford University Impact Award

Congratulations to Dr Chris Breward who has won his award for promotion of the 'impact, engagement and exploitation agenda.' Chris has driven forward individual contacts with industry, notably Oxford Mathematics' relationship with BP as well as materially encouraging a wider culture of engagement. Chris also led, together with Professor Colin Please, our successful bid for the funding of a Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Industrially Focused Mathematical Modelling which will train the next generation of applied mathematicians to fill critical roles in industry and academia.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Professor Jon Chapman live on the One Show, Thursday 14th November

This Thursday, 14th November, BBC One's The One Show is broadcasting live from outside Balliol College in Oxford at 7pm, as part of a Children in Need special. The programme will be welcoming its team of rickshaw riders, five teenagers who are cycling 700 miles across the country, non-stop over eight days.To celebrate their achievement the show has collected a group of Oxford academics including Jon Chapman, Professor of Mathematics and its Applications, to answer some challenging questions (well, challenging in the loosest sense of the word) about travelling by rickshaw and the meaning of life.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Mat Chivers wins Oxford Mathematics Sculpture Competition

We are delighted to announce that the sculptor Mat Chivers has been selected as the winner of the Oxford Mathematics Sculpture Competition. The competition invited artists to propose, and eventually create, a substantial and artistically significant sculpture to be placed in the main entrance lobby of the new Mathematical Institute, the Andrew Wiles Building. 

Mat will join us for a 4-week artist residency, starting 18 November, to develop his final proposal. The final work will be inspired by, or connected to, a mathematical theme, concept or shape.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Oxford Mathematics undergraduate William Perry wins SET Best Mathematics Student prize

The Science, Engineering & Technology Student of the Year Awards (SET) are established as Europe's most important awards for science and engineering undergraduates. This year the Award for the Best Mathematics Student, judged by the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications and the London Mathematical Society, goes to William Perry, Keble College, University of Oxford, for Spin two-dimensional local field theories.

Monday, 4 November 2013

Jackie Stedall wins the British Society for the History of Mathematics 2013 Neumann Prize

The British Society for the History of Mathematics (BSHM) has announced the winner of the 2013 Neumann Prize. This prize, named after Oxford mathematician and past BSHM President Dr Peter Neumann, OBE, is awarded every two years for the best mathematics book containing historical material and aimed at a non-specialist readership.

The 2013 winner is Jackie Stedall, of Oxford University, for her book The History of Mathematics: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford, 2012). The nominating committee praised the book as "stimulating, very well written, and very suitable for the 'general reader', also containing many new and perceptive remarks about how to approach the subject". The award was made at a joint BSHM-Gresham College meeting on 31 October.

Monday, 28 October 2013

The Secret Mathematicians - Marcus Du Sautoy's lecture now online

From composers to painters, writers to choreographers, the mathematician's palette of shapes, patterns and numbers has proved a powerful inspiration. Often subconsciously artists are drawn to the same structures that fascinate mathematicians, as they constantly hunt for interesting new structures to frame their creative process. Through the work of artists like Borges and Dalí, Messiaen and Laban, Marcus will explore the hidden mathematical ideas that underpin their creative output and reveal that the work of the mathematician is also driven by strong aesthetic values.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Colloquium on November 15 - Kazuya Kato

The Mathematical Institute and Oxford University Press announce the following colloquium:

Professor Kazuya Kato (University of Chicago)

Title: Heights of motives

Date and venue: 15 November, 4.30pm, Mathematical Institute

Abstract: the height of a rational number a/b (a,b integers which are coprime) is defined as max (|a|, |b|). A rational number with small (resp. big) height is a simple (resp. complicated) number. Though the notion height is so naive, height has played a fundamental role  in number theory. There are important variants of this notion. In 1983, when Faltings proved the Mordell conjecture (a conjecture formulated in 1921), he first  proved the Tate conjecture for abelian varieties (it was also a great  conjecture) by defining heights of abelian varieties, and then deducing Mordell conjecture from this. The height of an abelian variety tells how complicated are the numbers we need to define the abelian variety.  In this talk, after these initial explanations, I will explain that this height is generalised to heights of  motives (a motive is a kind of generalisation of abelian variety.) This generalisation of height is related to open problems in number theory. If we can prove finiteness of the number of motives of bounded height, we can prove important conjectures in number theory such as general Tate conjecture and Mordell-Weil type conjectures in many cases.

Colloquia are followed by a reception designed to give people the opportunity to have more informal contact with the speaker. A book display will be available at this time in the common room. The series is funded, in part, through the generous support of Oxford University Press.

The colloquia are aimed towards a general mathematical audience.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Professor Ian Lipkin to give the Annual Charles Simonyi Lecture - 08 November

Of microbes and men: tales of the small game hunter - Ian Lipkin

For this year’s Charles Simonyi Lecture on Friday 08 November we welcome Ian Lipkin the “World’s Greatest Virus Hunter” (Discover Magazine). Using his experience studying HIV/AIDS, SARS and pandemic influenza, Ian will review how bacteria, fungi and viruses cause illness, why new infections appear and the implications of the emerging field of microbiology.

Ian Lipkin is the John Snow Professor of Epidemiology, Professor of Neurology and Pathology, and Director of the Center for Infection and Immunity at Columbia University. He was also the scientific consultant for the Steven Soderbergh film Contagion.

Ian Lipkin will be introduced by Marcus du Sautoy, Simonyi Professor for the Public Understanding of Science at University of Oxford.

This event will take place in the Oxford Playhouse. To book please click here.