Oxford Mathematician Matthew Butler has been awarded the biennial Lighthill-Thwaites Prize for 2019. The prize is awarded by the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications to researchers who have spent no more than five years in full-time study or work since completing their undergraduate degrees.
Matthew's research focuses on fluid dynamics, particulary flows at low Reynolds number involving surface tension and interactions with elastic boundaries. His talk at the British Applied Mathematics Colloquium 2019 where the prize was awarded was entitled 'Sticking with droplets: Insect-inspired modelling of capillary adhesion" and focused on how having a deformable foot can be beneficial when trying to adhere to a substrate using the surface tension of a fluid droplet. In his PhD Matthew is studying insect adhesion, and in particular how insects can utilise physical laws to improve their ability to stick to surfaces.